Israeli teachers get bonus for encouraging army recruitment

Jerusalem, Jan 22 (IANS) Israel's education ministry is trying to encourage army recruitment in high schools across the country by giving economic benefits to those teachers that motivate more students to join the military draft.

The ministry confirmed Monday that it is awarding educators with "differential positive incentives" to improve the teachers performance on different subjects like academic achievement, social values, and also on the percentage of students who join the army service after their studies.

According to a letter sent to Xinhua by the ministry, the schools that rank among the top 40 percent of recruited students, will receive funds to grant bonuses to their educators.

This new reward system, established by the ministry a year ago, has been criticized by some as dangerous to national and regional peace, since it may lead to indoctrination and extreme nationalism.

"Educating to prepare for the army and to encourage enlistment comes at the expense of regular education, which is meant to educate for democracy and citizenship," Sharaf Hassan, educational director for the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, told The Christian Science Monitor about the new incentives.


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