Results of the Meitzav exam, Israel's school growth and efficiency indicator, were published Tuesday and showed widening gaps between the Jewish and Arab sectors, according to the Education Ministry.
The exam, held once every two yearsamong fifth and eighth grade pupils, tests students' knowledge of Math, Hebrew or Arabic, Science, and English.
Officials presented with results (Photo: Muki Schwartz)
The pedagogical surroundings of the students are also examined, including private tutors, student-teacher relations, and violence in schools. The results published Tuesday encompass over 1,000 schools and roughly 110,000 students.
The results show a decline in scores achieved by Arab students in English and Science. However, Jewish students showed improvement in all areas but English, in which scores remained similar to the previous exam.
The two sectors have been increasingly divided in recent years, and this year's results show a vast dissimilarity in the subject of Science. The gap between Arabs and Jews has also widened slightly in eighth grade English.
In addition to the difference between races, the exam also showed differences between socio-economic groups among Jews. Especially wide gaps were observed in the subjects of Hebrew and English. Students belonging to lower socio-economic groups also scored especially low in Science and Math this year.
No special differences were noted between the sexes other than in the subject of Hebrew, where girls scored slightly higher than boys.
The results of the exam also point to an increasing level of violence in schools, with 13% reporting they had been involved in a violent incident in the month prior to the exam. In addition, 39% of students said they relied on private tutors, mainly in English.
Altogether 69% of students tested reported a general feeling of wellbeing in their respective schools. However, only half of those tested reported a caring and supportive relationship with their teachers.