Building work begins on first elite private school

Will it be another Eton? That's the question being asked as building work takes place on Israel's first elite private school, reports The planned Havruta High School for Leadership and Culture, which will cater for up to 600 students aged 12 to 18, expects to open its doors in the next school year and aims to produce the future leaders of Israeli society, according to founder and school head Dror Aloni, son of former Meretz party head and education minister Shulamit Aloni. According to the report, building work on the new private school began recently in Neveh Hadassah, between Even Yehuda and Ra'anana, and a hand-picked team of top teachers - all of them with second or further degrees - is being trained in the Harkness educational system, a system developed in New Hampshire that encourages critical thinking, the taking on of challenges, independent learning and personal responsibility. The school will emphasize subjects relevant to the 21st century, and class sizes will be small. The fee per student is expected to be around NIS 35,000 per year. "The education system in Israel is loaded with money but most of it is going to administration and not to its foundation stones, the teachers and students," Aloni said. "We are trying to build a role model that will place most of its resources in teachers and students alone. Our ambition is to create a quality system that pays good teachers appropriately, and not what we see in the existing education system." Aloni also said Israel had an urgent need for leaders, and the school aimed to provide them.