Masa Israel Journey gets English-speaking college grads to fill teaching gaps in Israeli periphery

  (photo credit: Masa)
(photo credit: Masa)

A report by the Knesset’s Research and Information Center, based on PISA test scores, noted that shortages of teachers and educational staff are generally higher in Israel than the OECD average.

One of the proposed solutions is bringing young Jewish college graduates from English speaking countries to Israel as volunteer teachers for schools on Israel’s geographic and social periphery: “It is precisely the great distress the education system is experiencing today which led us to launch the Masa Teaching Fellows Program,” explains Ofer Gutman, CEO of Masa Israel Journey, “With the beginning of the school year, some 200 volunteers from abroad will land in Israel to teach Israeli students English directly, strengthening the instruction of English on the social and geographic periphery.”

According to data provided by the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics, the number of teachers graduating teaching certification programs in Israel’s colleges and universities has declined dramatically, especially in vital fields such as math, science, and English.

As a quick and immediate solution to this problem, volunteers for the “Masa Israel Teaching Fellows” program, an initiative with the Ministry of Education, will come directly from the United States, England, Australia, South Africa, Canada, and even Ecuador and Italy. All speak English as a first language, have college degrees, and some have teaching certification. They will be integrated into some 100 schools from north to south, including in Bat Yam, Jerusalem, Rishon Letziyon, Southern Tel Aviv, Beer Sheva, Netanyah, Kiryat Gat, Haifa, Rahat, and Nazareth.