After director-general leaves Education Ministry, second official resigns

Slovik, who was appointed director-general in July, was fired following disagreements with Shasha-Biton about the education system’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

MK YIFAT SHASHA-BITON (New Hope) August 2, 2021 (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
MK YIFAT SHASHA-BITON (New Hope) August 2, 2021
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

The Education Ministry official in charge of the vaccination project in schools, Yogev Nadav, resigned from his position on Tuesday, following the dismissal of Education Ministry Director-General Yigal Slovik by Education Minister Yifat Sasha-Bitton.

On Monday, Israel began its coronavirus vaccination campaign for children ages 5-11 in schools. Shasha-Biton has been said to actively oppose the campaign, which was supported and led by Slovik.

Slovik, who was appointed director-general in July, was fired following disagreements with Shasha-Biton about the education system’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

"There is no connection between his firing and the subject of coronavirus," said Sasha-Biton.

Shasha-Biton commented earlier on her decision to fire Slovik during New Hope’s faction meeting on Monday, responding to accusations of wrongful dismissal.

 A nurse prepares a dose of the Soberana 02 vaccine during its clinical trials at a hospital amid concerns about the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Havana, Cuba, June 29, 2021. (credit: REUTERS/ALEXANDRE MENEGHINI/FILE PHOTO) A nurse prepares a dose of the Soberana 02 vaccine during its clinical trials at a hospital amid concerns about the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Havana, Cuba, June 29, 2021. (credit: REUTERS/ALEXANDRE MENEGHINI/FILE PHOTO)

“Sometimes we are required to make difficult decisions, and I made a decision,” she said at the meeting.“We have a wonderful team working on the vaccination campaign. The former director-general [Slovik] did a good job along with everyone else,” she said.

Shasha-Biton also responded to allegations which accused her of unfairly dismissing Slovik based on personal considerations. “The considerations were professional; any outside noises are total fake news.”

In August, prior to the start of the new school year, she told N12 that vaccinations at schools would be a “crime.” Shortly after her interview, Slovik opposed her views in a 103FM interview, saying the Education Ministry “does not have a problem with vaccinations in schools.”

While Slovik will only be officially dismissed from his role on January 1, 2022, he is de facto no longer the director-general, as he was given a leave of absence for the rest of December.