Northern schools may not start on time due to war

The school year will not begin in northern Israel as scheduled next month if the war with Hizbullah continues, Education Minister Yuli Tamir said Tuesday. Tamir noted that her ministry would need an extra NIS 500 million in funding to deal with traumatized children from the north of the country. "We will make a big effort so that we do not find them in a similar situation to the pupils [who were evacuated] from Gaza," she said, referring to the trauma suffered by former Jewish residents of the Gaza Strip who were forcibly removed from their homes during last year's Gaza pullout. Education Ministry officials were preparing for three possible scenarios ahead of the start of the school year on September 1: continued all-out war, reduced warfare, or a complete cease-fire. The decision on which schools in the north will open and which will be closed will be made in the coming days based on the recommendation of the IDF's Home Front Command.