Naftali Bennett 370.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
The Finance and Economy and Trade ministries agreed on Sunday to allocate an
additional NIS 110 million to technological colleges.
The move ended
weeks of negotiations with the the Forum of Technological Colleges.
53 technological institutions across the country went on strike at the start of
the academic year earlier this month and called for the government to allocate
more funds to their activity.
The colleges had originally requested that
the Treasury approve a budget of NIS 140m.
to be distributed over five
years to technical education, NIS 80m. of which would be allocated for the
current academic year.
After several discussions held between the
parties, the Finance Ministry had only agreed to a budget of NIS 90m., a
solution which had been rejected by most of the institutions except for the
technology colleges belonging to the education group ORT.
agreement stated that the newly allocated funds, which represent a 70 percent
increase in budget, will be distributed over six years.
students enrolled in technological colleges will also be included in the
financial aid fund of the Council for Higher Education’s Planning and Budgeting
Committee, making them eligible to receive scholarships and grants in the amount
of NIS 6m. over two years, which used to be reserved to students in academic
Some NIS 4m. have already been allocated for the purpose for this
In addition, it was agreed that the technological
colleges’ students’ tuitions will not be increased and will be matched to the
fees of universities in the country.
In terms of students’ rights,
technological institutions will be allowed to implement retests for exams, which
already exist in academic tracks. Students serving in the reserves and pregnant
students will also receive the same benefits as their academic
“Today we are making history in technological education,”
Economy and Trade Minister Naftali Bennett said on Sunday.
started a revolution with the goal that every young person will prefer to go to
Bennett also called on young people to study
technological subjects instead of law.
Ori Reshtick, chairman of the
National Union of Israeli Students and who mediated the negotiations between the
Treasury and the Forum of Technical Colleges, said that Sunday’s agreement
“ensures that the status of technological students will be comparable to that of
the students in academic institutions.
“The student population displayed
public responsibility and determination throughout the fight and together we
saved technological education in Israel,” he said.
Forum head Dr.
Yocheved Pinhasi-Adiv praised Reshtick for his involvement in the process and
said that the consensus will “improve the training of engineers for the benefit
of industry and the economy of Israel.”