Ethiopian students? Not in our school
By Dany Adeno Adebe
Students of Ethiopian descent living in Netanya are sent to ‘their own’ school; municipality: Registration areas determined years ago
In the Azorim neighborhood in Netanya 40% or residents are of Ethiopian descent. Most of them live on Motzkin and Eshkol Streets. The local Rambam elementary school is on Eshkol Street. The school has a student body that consists of mostly Ethiopian students.
In its website, the municipality made a statement that more than anything underscores the separation that exists within schools. On the same street, but in different ‘blocks’ there are two separate registration areas.
For example, from 2 Motzkin Street to 20 Motzkin Street, where residents are mostly from the Ethiopian community, children are registered at the nearby Rambam School. Those living in numbers 22 through 28, the newer houses on the block, are registered at the Uziel School some 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) away.
The municipality said in response that the registration areas were determined several years ago after the Uziel School’s student body dwindled as the neighborhood average age increased. This led the municipality to expand the Uziel School registration area.
This, in contrast to the Rambam School, where no such problem arose. “Sadly over the years, due to social processes of which the municipality has no control, there is a growing trend of students leaving the neighborhood and the city over their parents’ refusal to send them to Rambam School.
“Some chose to go to independent haredi schools which led to a situation where the number of haredi schools has risen dramatically and their number now equals State schools.
“In order to deal with this new reality and with the mistakes made by the State of Israel when they allowed the Ethiopian aliyah to settle in large concentrated numbers, the education minister and mayor are working to form a plan that will assist in integration and which will change the current reality.”