Murdoch backs Peres plan for private high school to train leaders

Education model, he says, could spread throughout the Middle East and promote education among Israel's still-hostile neighbors.

Rupert Murdoch 88 224 (photo credit: )
Rupert Murdoch 88 224
(photo credit: )
A task force which includes Australian-American global media mogul Rupert Murdoch has been set up by President Shimon Peres to help establish a private high school for educating this country's future leaders. Murdoch, the chairman of News Corporation, who reportedly has nearly $9 billion in assets, revealed on Thursday that the school would be a model for raising the level of Israeli education. Speaking at the Presidential Conference 2008: Facing Tomorrow at the Jerusalem International Convention Center, Murdoch said that the initiative for the school came from Peres, and that other billionaires, like Leslie Wexner, chairman of the Limited Brands corporation, and New York Daily News publisher Mortimer Zuckerman have also been recruited to the task force. Murdoch said that in the Middle East there are "millions of talented people and oil resources, but many of these people remain on the fringes of global economy. We can change that, for the first time in world history, using Internet-related technology to disseminate knowledge - not propaganda - freely and cheaply, so these people can move up in society." Murdoch said the best way was to improve education in the region, but that in many countries, educational systems had kept up with technology. As a start, he agreed to serve on a task force of Israeli and American businessmen to examine the viability of a new private high school to cultivate a new generation of Israeli leaders. "If we do our jobs property, such a high school will be model for Israel's educational system," he said. Murdoch, rated as the 33rd wealthiest American, said the task force was asked to report back to Peres within three months. This education model, he said, could spread throughout the Middle East and promote education among Israel's still-hostile neighbors. Young people who got a good education would have a chance for good jobs and be less susceptible to violence, he added. "Just as education has helped Israel prosper," he said, "it can help people across the region achieve the same results for their young people. Israel will get hope from having better neighbors."