After months of promising to deal with overcrowding in elementary school classrooms in the face of protests, strikes, and threats to delay the opening of the school year, the "Small Class Reform" was announced by Education Minister Naftali Bennett at a press conference on Thursday morning.
"Today the sardines are freed from their tin can," announced Bennett, adding "we promised to take care of it, and we took care of it."
After a long night of budget discussions, Bennett boasted about the NIS 50b education budget, saying it is the largest education budget in the history of the state.
"This is the age of education," Bennett said, explaining that the reform mandates a maximum of 32-34 pupils, depending on the socioeconomic strength of the school district.
The plan will go into effect for first grade classes across the country in the upcoming 2015/16 school year and will expand every year to include an additional grade until all six elementary school grades are included.