Photo: Ahuva Brener
First roundtable discussion held in Iksal
Photo: Ahuva Brener
Photo: Ahuva Brener
Panels discussed academic excellence, values
Photo: Ahuva Brener

Arab educators argue values over academic excellence

Hundreds of Arab, Jewish educators attend first-of-its-kind roundtable discussion at Iksal Regional Council; 'Jews are on one extreme, while Arabs are on the other,' radio personality says

The Iksal Regional Council and the Arvut Social Movement held a roundtable discussion on education recently – the first event of its kind to be held at the primarily Arab council. The event drew hundreds of Arab and Jewish educators and officials who discussed the merits of values and education over academic excellence.


"Iksal is an example of a council that decided to invest all its resources in education, which is the primary shaper of our population and our children's character," Council head Abed al-Salem Darousha said at the panel discussion.


Dr. Orna Simhon, the head of the Education Ministry's northern district, who attended the event, argued that achievements should be students' highest priority.


"Education is a social engine, the foremost tool that helps our kids succeed and integrate in Israeli society," she said. "(…) Kids need to know one main thing: One must excel at whatever one does."


Veteran radio broadcaster and journalist Zohir Bahloul delivered a rebuttal, positing that academic goals should take a back seat to values.


"We excel while committing a suicide," he said. "We are disconnected from each other, we do not follow the rules of coexistence; Jews are at one extreme and the Arabs are on the other."


He claimed that the Education Ministry puts too much emphasis on grades and too little emphasis on values education.


Issues discussed at the event included volunteer work, consumerism and other social phenomena.


"We are entering a globalized, connected world," Dr. Gilad Shadmon said at the conclusion of the discussion. "The one who will succeed in this new world is the one who will know to build an interconnected community system. This is why the values of cooperation, solidarity and the interrelatedness should be the focus of the education that we instill in our children."



פרסום ראשון: 04.12.12, 08:00
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