Education Minister: Most haredim want the core curriculum

Education Minister Bennett says most haredim want their children to learn English, math, but Ministry isn't prepared to provide it.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
Flash 90

Education Minister Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home) told Yediot Aharonot that most haredi parents want their children to study the core curriculum.

"When I began my term as Education Minister, I came in believing that the haredim are not interested in the core curriculum," Bennett told Yediot Aharonot. "Today, as I begin a fourth school year, I can say that this is absolutely not true - not in the 'Torani' education system and not in the independent haredi education system."

"You could say that 85% of the haredi community want their children to learn math and English on a high level. They want it quietly, without noise and without bells. The problem is not that they're not interested, it's that we're not ready. We don't have the teachers for it, and we don't have the curriculum for it."

"In English, as well, we did not...prepare appropriate books for them. What do I care if the girl in the booklet is named Sarah'le and she has a dress instead of pants? Instead of supporting the 85% who are interested, we fought the 15% who aren't."

Regarding the haredi version of the matriculation exam, Bennett said, "Some of the haredi girls don't want official matriculation exams, but they do equivalent exams in an external institution. Up until two years ago, there was no exam paralleling the five-point (highest level - ed.) exam. This year, for the first time, several dozen girls have done such an exam, and the hi-tech market has declared the Szold Institute's exams to be equivalent to the matriculation exams."