Education Ministry: Parents won't pay for services that weren't provided

Schools and day cares will refund parents for services that were paid for, but not provided due to the closures.

A GROUP of junior high school students are demanding the government fulfill its educational duty to them.  (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
A GROUP of junior high school students are demanding the government fulfill its educational duty to them.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
The Education Ministry announced on Sunday that parents would not pay for services that were not provided due to schools being closed due to the coronavirus outbreak. 
Schools and daycares will refund parents for services that were paid for, but not provided due to the closures. 
The payments that will be refunded include optional payments (such as for class parties or trips), voluntary payments (such as for tablets and laptops) and payments for optional studies and food.
"I said at the beginning of the crisis that I would do everything possible in order to ease the payments by parents," said Education Minister Rafi Peretz. "The coronavirus crisis has taken a toll on health but, not less than that, a heavy educational cost in the form of unpaid leave for many parents."
The Finance Ministry and the Teacher’s Union debated whether school days lost due to the measures taken across the country to prevent the spread of COVID-19 might be returned to the students during the summer holiday, Channel 12 reported in March. The salaries of teachers will be paid in full despite the fact that they are no longer able to teach in class facing the students. However, many teachers are teaching their students via remote learning and online classes.
Peretz announced last week that no decision regarding school studies after Passover has yet been made. The decision "will be examined later," said Peretz in an online press conference.
"The Education Ministry is preparing for a continued scenario of distance learning."
All schools, kindergartens and universities in Israel were shuttered in mid-March as the coronavirus outbreak worsened.

Celia Jean contributed to this report.