What the USA Could Learn from Israel’s Education System

The USA's educational system has serious problems and it can be improved by implementing changes modeled on the Israel’s education system.



What the USA Could Learn from Israel’s Education System

According to surveys conducted by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), Israel is the third most educated country in the world, right after Canada and Japan. The United States holds the sixth position on the list.

The American education system, compared to other countries, is often perceived as a superior one. That conclusion usually comes from global university rankings. According to the World University Rankings 2020 by Times Higher Education, seven U.S. universities are ranked among the top 10. This leads to the logical conclusion that the USA is home to some of the finest universities in the world. But its educational system has serious problems. In fact, it can be improved by implementing changes modeled on the Israel’s education system.

Why Is the American Education System Flawed?

Smart people in the United States do not choose to become teachers. The system tolerates failing teachers, simply because it doesn’t train and respect teachers as true professionals. Great teachers are not making enough money, so why should talented people decide to become great teachers? The Teacher Prep Review from 2013 showed that two-thirds of teachers at the beginning of their careers were not prepared well enough for this profession.

No one is saying that there are no great teachers in America. We’re just looking at the facts: most of them aren’t well-trained. As a result, children are being trained to memorize rather than to think critically. The system is still challenging, since the students have to face standardized testing and complete several assignments for a single subject. However, when they face challenging projects, they get affordable essay services from EduBirdie. There is no law that forbids professional writers to assist students with academic writing projects. Students of all ages buy their papers online and get good grades despite the fact that they didn’t do any of the work.

Lack of innovation is another serious problem that’s holding Americans back. The country made high school compulsory about a century ago. That was the last major adjustment to the model. Although all children have to attend school up to 12th grade, most aren’t prepared for the college system when they graduate from high school.

The Lessons that Israel’s Education System Can Teach

Israel emphasizes the quality of teaching much more than the U.S. There is a larger pool of highly educated people to draw from. The salaries for teachers here are still very low – $31,000 a year in “purchasing power parity”, which is lower than the average of $42,500 for teachers. This is something that Israel has to improve to keep its teachers motivated. However, we’ve seen some improvements in that aspect over the last few years, and we expect to see more of them.

Trained and talented teachers place the emphasis on practical skills. Students are learning about entrepreneurship and coding from a very young age. The number of essays they have to complete is much lower, so they focus on gaining actual skills instead of doing theoretical research.

In the USA, an average student in a public school is obliged to take 112 standardized tests. They impose a lot of stress and encourage memorizing instead of learning. When combined with numerous academic writing assignments, standardized tests contribute towards a stiff system that doesn’t inspire any creativity and practice.

Israeli students have a single standardized test to take, around the age of 17 or 18. More practice and less memorizing - that’s a major difference that makes Israel’s system better.

Is There a Point in These Comparisons?

Each educational system has its problems. When we compare different models, we can learn from each other. Japan, Israel, Finland, and Canada have successful models that result in better training and superior quality of teaching. The main disadvantage of the American system is the low quality of teaching, which tolerates failing teachers despite imposing too much standardized testing.

BIO: Elizabeth Skinner explores different educational systems, trying to identify the most perfect one. She believes that everyone on this planet deserves high-quality education, but not many countries are providing it. Elizabeth likes to blog about the strengths and faults of schooling models.