The High Court of Justice is due to hear a petition on Sunday asking it to declare the government in contempt of court for allegedly failing to obey a ruling handed down 18 months ago. The ruling canceled a cabinet decision to provide special educational funding to communities in the periphery because it discriminated against Arab citizens. The contempt of court petition, like the original one, was filed by the Higher Monitoring Committee for Arab Affairs in Israel, the Higher Monitoring Committee for Educational Affairs in Israel and the Israeli Arab NGO Adalah. In the original decision, handed down unanimously by a panel of seven justices, the court gave the state one year to implement the ruling. "Only after the period of grace given in the court's verdict, on February 2, 2007, expired did the state, unexpectedly, ask to delay implementation by six months, until September 1, 2007," wrote the petitioners. And then, close to the date of the hearing on the state's request for the six-month extension, on June 17, 2007, the state submitted an update to the court, asking for five more years. In response to this request, the court wrote that it "was not satisfied the state had done all it could within a reasonable amount of time to implement the ruling," but gave the state one more year from the date of the hearing. The second extension expired on June 17. The original petition attacked a cabinet decision establishing areas of national priority in the outlying areas of the country for providing extra funding for schools, on the understanding that they suffered from deficiencies because of their distance from the center of the country. The government prepared a map of the national priority areas. According to the map, the areas of national priority included 500 communities, of which only four were Israeli Arab. The court ruled that even if the determination of the boundaries was objective, the results were discriminatory. "Illegal discrimination can occur even when there is no discriminatory attempt or motivation on the part of those who establish the discriminatory norm," the seven justices, headed by Supreme Court President Aharon Barak, wrote. "When it comes to discrimination, it is enough that the result is discriminatory." The court ruled that the decision establishing the national priority areas for education "must be canceled. The flaws in the decision are grave - and cannot be allowed to stand."