"For the first time in Israel's history, there's a real danger that the academic year will be canceled," Prof. Moshe Kaveh, president of Bar Ilan University and chairman of the Committee of University Presidents (CUP), told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday evening following a dramatic reversal in the negotiations after the Finance Ministry refused to approve a tentative deal reached between the CUP and the striking Senior Lecturers Union (SLU) over a mechanism to prevent lecturers' wage erosion in the future. "Nobody - not the 150,000 university students, not the state, not anyone - can afford to lose an entire academic year," Kaveh warned. "We're standing at the edge, and it's not certain even now that we can compensate for the lost time. It's a matter of days, perhaps a week. We must return to negotiations immediately." Reached for comment, a Finance Ministry spokesman said the ministry had nothing to say about the matter.