Is Israel's education system in trouble? The World Economic Forum's (WEF) 2012-13 Global Competitiveness report ranked Israel's
education system 53rd out of 144 countries.
The report showed that Israel dropped 10 spots from 79th place to 89th in the quality of math and science education.
"If not addressed, poor educational quality, particularly in math and science could undermine Israel's innovation-driven competitiveness strategy over the longer term," the report wrote.
The WEF publishes the Global Competitiveness Report (GCR) every year. It is considered the most comprehensive and authoritative assessment of the comparative strengths and weaknesses of national economies, used by governments, academics and business leaders.
According to the report, the education level at Israeli primary schools is ranked at 71st place.
However, not everything is negative. Israel ranked in first place in the sub-category "quality of scientific research institutions"
for the second consecutive year.
Israel's main strengths remain its capacity for innovation (3rd place); high number of patents (4th place) and the ease of access to venture capital (3rd). Overall, in the innovation category, Israel is ranked 8th.
Amir Hayak, CEO of the Manufacturers Association of Israel said that "On the one hand, Israel's remarkable results which are shown in the report, indicate that the 'Israeli mind' is an example of excellence at an international level."
"However, Israel's poor performance in certain categories, especially the ones pertaining to the education system, sparks a great fear that the future generation will not be able to exceed the bar we have set."
"Israel's drop to 53rd place in the education system category, the ranking of the education level at primary schools at 71st place and the steep fall in the quality of math and science category, all raise concern regarding Israel's future. If we don't work together to restore the education system, we will find ourselves at a loss," said Hayak.