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A country haunted by demons 2000: The CBS reports a consistent decrease since the year XNUMX in the number of teachers and the hours of study for science - especially chemistry

The number of teachers and teaching hours in science has decreased absolutely over the last 15 years. In mathematics there was an increase, but even this does not catch up with the increase in the number of students * Many of the mathematics teachers are nearing retirement and the new teachers come from non-scientific professions

Chemistry lab in a school, dramatic deterioration in the number of study hours, teachers and students in 15 years. Photo: shutterstock
Chemistry lab at school, a dramatic deterioration in the number of study hours, teachers and students in 15 years. Photo: shutterstock

Science studies in the Jewish sector have deteriorated since 2000. This is according to a report published yesterday by the Central Bureau of Statistics. In the last 15 years (2000-2014), the number of science teachers in high schools decreased by 0.3% each year (on average) and the number of teaching hours by 0.4% each year. That means a cumulative drop of over 4% absolute.

In mathematics the situation is slightly better, but not alarming, an increase of 4.6% in the number of teachers and 4.9% in teaching hours in the Jewish sector. This is when the demand for scientists and engineers is only increasing.

In the Arab sector the situation is good, at least from a relative point of view, where there was an increase of about 13% in the number of teachers and in the hours of instruction in mathematics and about 6% and the entry of girls into these studies was also recorded.

The development of mathematics and science studies 2000-2014. From a report of the Central Bureau of Statistics published on 11/5/14

Decrease in the scope of studying the sciences - the main findings

  • During the years 2014-2000, the scope of teaching mathematics in the upper division increased in Arab education at an average annual rate of about 13% compared to an average annual rate of only about 5% in Hebrew education. In the sciences, the scope of teaching increased at an average annual rate of about 6% in Arab education compared to a downward trend in Hebrew education.
  • In Hebrew education, the number of students per math teacher is small, while in science the number is increasing. In Arab education, the number of students per math teacher is small, while in science the number is stable.
  • In Hebrew and Arab education, the average number of hours per student in mathematics has increased, while in science the number is small.
  • In the last five years (2014-2010), the scope of teaching hours in chemistry increased by 25% in Arab education, compared to an increase of only about 6% in state-Hebrew education and a decrease of about 20% in state-religious education. The amount of teaching hours in mathematics increased by 30% in the state-Hebrew education, by 31% in the state-religious education and by 43% in the Arab education.
  • The proportion of schools that teach chemistry is in a downward trend throughout the education system and prominently in state-religious education. In Arab education, a noticeable downward trend was found in the proportion of schools that teach physics.
  • In Arab education, the proportion of women teaching math and science is on a noticeable upward trend.
  • The average monthly (gross) salary among physics teachers is about 20% higher than the salary of the other teachers in the upper division, reaching 2012 NIS per month in 13,186.
  • In Hebrew education, the proportion of math and science teachers who are of retirement age or older has been on the rise in recent years.
  • Most of the new math and science teachers come from within the education system.
  • About 30% of the new mathematics teachers who came from the education system, came from non-scientific professions.

Interpretation: want to be a celebrity

There is almost nothing in what High Tech Academy members and others warn of the danger of losing Israel's comparative advantage in future generations, Prof. Dan Shechtman even ran with this issue for the position of President. The fact that he received only one vote shows how important the issue is to the state captains.
Elisha Yanai, one of the leaders of the high-tech industry, estimates that the negative increase in the number of matriculation graduates in mathematics and science costs the economy billions of dollars, that the high-tech industry could sell more if it had enough engineers. University lecturers also often complain about a drop in the level of those admitted to bachelor's degrees, and that they are forced to complete materials they were supposed to study in high school in the first year.

Today, when the role model is the anorexics in the Big Brother house, it's no wonder that's what the kids want to be when they grow up.

Existential risk

two years ago The CBS published a report according to which state education will become a minority within a few years, Given the balance of births today in the various sectors (Orthodox, religious state, state and Arab).


Prof. Dan Ben-David, a macroeconomist and public policy expert at Tel Aviv University and head of the Taub Center for Social Policy Research in Israel, said at the time in an interview with the Hidaan website that the problem has three aspects:

  1. What are we even teaching the children?
  2. Who teaches the children - how are the teachers trained and how are they rewarded
  3. How is the second largest budget of the State of Israel after the Ministry of Defense managed.

"Given the level of education received by very large populations in Israel, I am very concerned about our ability as a country to have a modern, competitive economy, an economy at the first world level, in a generation or two. This could lead to an existential risk because without a first world economy we cannot maintain a first world army and what is developing here in the neighborhood does not bode well for a country that cannot defend itself, without even taking a right or left position."

Unfortunately, these warnings did not reach the ears of the High Court judges. In December 2014, the High Court of Justice made an unfortunate decision not to require ultra-Orthodox yeshiva students to take core studies. The claim for which the petition was rejected was paternalism. Unfortunately, the state decides to leave people ignorant and poor, without realizing that it comes out of its own pocket and it is not just about the direct costs of the allowances and discounts but the huge loss of the product of almost a million people.



The exclusion of science from the media


The HM estimates that there is a close connection between the deterioration of scientific coverage in the media, and the reluctance of students to study scientific subjects and start a scientific or engineering career. In the sixties and seventies there was a huge demand for scientific and engineering professions following the Apollo mission, which led to a huge exposure of science in the media.

What did the academic institutions, affected by the trend, do in this regard? Nothing, they look at the press as an outsider. If he wants to he will eat, if he doesn't want to he won't eat and the newspapers/portals are eating less and less. I have yet to come across one who understands this connection.


29 תגובות

  1. Apparently the Revolutionary Guards broke into the science's servers. Is there another explanation for comments from five years ago appearing in recent comments?

  2. Asaf,
    I'm really sad to hear that this is why the project got stuck. My degrees are certainly not in chemistry, although I am now involved in chemistry and I managed bureaucratically to be associated with chemistry departments and therefore to teach chemistry. I am also in the US... So I don't know how much I can help but I'd love to try. Anyway, some of my best friends are PhDs in chemistry, so I can ask. How do you propose to do this?

  3. Avi,
    I have read several such reports in the last two months, the situation is shocking. I recognized this situation two years ago when I started working on the periodic table project ( which was born in light of my son's curiosity, and then I discovered that already in the year 2000 our situation was very bad, which means that the situation started at least in 1995. The project I built is already ready but unfortunately Rabbi, for months I have been looking for someone with a master's/third degree in chemistry to read the materials I wrote, make sure there are no errors and be able to serve as a sort of scientific advisor, but it turns out that the lack of awareness of science education is not only governmental. Maybe there is someone here?

  4. beginning,
    It seems to me that a website is as respectable as science,
    Must put an end to the practice of writers here, defaming other writers, in descriptions:
    liar, moron, idiot, moron, and other insulting epithets.

    Although those who use insults prove their nothingness and emptiness,
    But it lowers the level of the site...

    Regarding the teachers,
    I was surprised to read from the article about the significant increase in teachers' salaries.

    This increase justifies the reduction of their number, especially in light of the increased use
    in computers in teaching.

    It would be desirable if the number of teachers for other subjects also decreased,
    while increasing the use of computers.

  5. As an engineer and programmer I was amazed by the level of education in Switzerland. Beiti is majoring in languages, despite this she studies math, physics and chemistry at a higher level than what I studied in Israel in the 70's, and this despite the fact that I studied math and physics more.
    The sloppy English I learned is a shame compared to her Oxford level. Likewise French, Spanish, history, etc.
    This is actually the case in England, France, Germany, the Benelux, Scandinavia... the situation is much worse than my father thinks.

  6. Raphael
    Back to.

    Which Israeli company is looking for workers in the world? Why do you slander those who provide jobs for so many Israelis and pay taxes? There are some thieves, yes, but don't underestimate those who hold the country in the meantime.

  7. Where does Rick enter religion and ignorance
    It's not that the ultra-orthodox are all good at introducing their religion and ignorance to the population
    It's greed for money by the big companies in the economy that don't contribute and invest back in the population
    And instead they use their power to not pay taxes, and look for their workers all over the world.
    If they had contributed a certain percentage back to the population to promote science and knowledge, the situation would have looked different.

  8. Welcome. I also have a warrior son. May God protect them all and return to their homes in peace.

  9. Nissim, when are you coming back from the relocation?
    After Boaz finishes college?
    post Scriptum. I don't want to play with you who knows how to screw up the mouth better. It's not up to my level.

  10. Raphael
    You are such a dumbass ….. I said that an increase from 0.1% to 0.2% is an increase of 100%. I wasn't talking about how many employees or how many recruits. Didn't you learn in Kollel about proverbs and parables?

  11. Miracles,
    I make a complete mistake by intervening because then I tend to get carried away too much into the argument and it takes a lot of money but I can't help myself. I'm intervening because of something you wrote.

    I actually have something in principle against ultra-Orthodox. Their longevity fundamentally threatens my longevity and, in fact, the entire future of the human race. We saw what they did when they were in power (thousands of years of slavery, casteism, discrimination against women, superstitions, sacrifices) so we don't have to guess what will happen if they are in power again, this time armed with nuclear weapons.
    Of course, this does not mean that there are no good ultra-Orthodox, there are, and many of them do much more good deeds than I do, but in essence, at the base, they have nothing to do with liberalism, humanism and democracy. These are just tools they use to return to power and undo everything that has been achieved since the days of enlightenment and enlightenment.

    You can already see the laws they want to pass, the unique budgets for religious and Torah "education" issues, but never for strengthening secularism.
    You can also see what happens when an ultra-Orthodox is the chairman of the science and technology committee of the Knesset
    From the article:
    ""Gafni is a wise, skilled person and he managed some of the committee's discussions very well, such as the discussions on gas profits. But there were also occasions when he used the committee for disgraceful things for the benefit of the party, such as the debate on evolution studies," claims former MK Nitzan Horowitz, who was a member of the committee. "He brought people to the discussion who voiced clearly unscientific opinions and it was embarrassing. It is somewhat problematic that at the head of such a committee is a person whose basic approach is dark and anti-scientific. During the committee's visit to the space industry, they explained to us the latest developments and the telescopes. Gafni said during that visit that he did not understand why so much money was invested to watch the stars from five thousand years ago - it was embarrassing. But the bottom line is that it is not disconnected from other things and is only an expression of a bigger picture. This happens because these things are backed up while the leadership and its head are adopting a whole stream of education, so it should not be surprising that the head of the science committee is someone with shameful views. So when a scientist is brought to a committee discussion and the things are told to him, he laughs and is not impressed, but boy, that's what they teach him, it's very tragic," says Horowitz.

    Do you understand? When Gafni asks why spend so much money to watch the stars from 5000 years ago, he dismisses all the achievements of the human race in the last two hundred years. It is clear that he was in power, that he would not have seen the basic science that contradicts his worldview. It is a shame and disgrace that we are deteriorating.

  12. Raphael
    Understand that no secular person has anything against Haredim who form an army and work. on the contrary. We understand that it is very difficult for them. Our problem is with the parasites who don't contribute and only take and take and take.

    I know there are secularists who are garbage, avoid the army and dissolve. They are scoundrels, but at least they don't justify their lowliness with the "yell of the Torah".

    that's it.

    And say, everyone who is in relocation is inferior in your eyes?

  13. Miracles, what happened? I showed that you lie, so you start ranting and cursing like a common rascal? fall out…

  14. Raphael
    You were, and always will be, an idiot. Even during my stay abroad, I contribute more to Israel than a large part of the ultra-Orthodox. I also make more reserves than most. But you're on your own - you keep talking nonsense without understanding them.

    When the percentage of ultra-Orthodox in the military cemeteries will be equal to their percentage in the living population - then I will change my mind about these scoundrels.

    And if you make me angry, I will speak really badly.

  15. The Jewish people spontaneously differentiated: sometimes they chose to teach philosophy at the Sorbonne (or study physics at Princeton). Some provide production infrastructure for haute couture (Rue d'Aboquier, Paris and Via di Corsa, Rome). Others, delusional Zionists, insisted on coming here and developing unique settlement forms.
    Then all those who didn't came here. For what? One of the people also asked, and did not get a proper answer.

  16. Another quote from today's Walla news:

    A record year for the ultra-orthodox in the IDF: the number of recruits increased by 20%

    In the 2015-2014 conscription year, 2,400 ultra-Orthodox youth enlisted, compared to 2,000 the previous year, out of approximately 8,000 ultra-Orthodox candidates for conscription each year. A senior security official: "The attempts to force conscription harmed the process that the IDF is promoting"

  17. For the readers' convenience, I quote from the YNET article I mentioned:
    "The ultra-orthodox sector has massively joined the labor market in recent years. The ultra-Orthodox, and especially the ultra-Orthodox, definitely work (and in many places are also satisfied with them as quality personnel). The number of working ultra-Orthodox men rose dramatically to a rate of 58% in 2014, compared to 32% in 2004. Among ultra-Orthodox women, the increase is dramatic - a rate of 71% - and this, it should be noted, is even above the average of the general participation in the labor force in the economy, which stands on 65%.”

  18. It seems to me that my salary as a biologist and chemist is enough to discourage even those who do want to study the above professions. Of course, in the State of Israel, with such a salary, you can buy a house a little after buying a plot of land...

  19. Raphael
    When you saw it increase from 0.1% to 0.2%, it's an increase of 100%!!! Therefore, it seems that the increase is very large. The advantage of the ultra-Orthodox is that they don't make reserves for the most part... I personally prefer employees with eggs and hearts.

  20. The ultra-orthodox are not ignorant. The opposite is true. As for poverty, it's more a matter of perspective. There are many rich people who are poor and there are poor people who are rich and sages have already said that there is no poverty but knowledge. Regarding fluctuations in the labor market, all the latest surveys show that there is a large increase among the ultra-Orthodox, and in some cases they even exceed the general average. For example, in our company, which is a high-tech company, there are many ultra-Orthodox employees who did not study core and completed what they needed for a job later.

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