Compulsory Education Law Is Implemented

September 18, 1949

Photo: Zalman Shazar, Israel’s first Education Minister (and third President)

The Compulsory Education Law which had been passed on September 12th, enters into law, requiring all children between the ages of 5 and 15 to attend a recognized educational institution.  The law also established that the children would be “entitled to free elementary education at an official educational institution.”

While schools are free, parents purchase textbooks and pay school fees which include things like field trips and extracurriculars.

The law also gave parents the right to choose an institution that belonged to a recognized trend; today Israel has separate secular and religious public schools as well as independent religious schools and schools for Arabs and Druze.

In 2009, the Law was amended extending the age of compulsory education through grade 12. In 2015 it was extended to three- and four-year olds.

For the original 1949 Law, click here.