On Thursday, November 18, 2010, CECI held a conference at Tel Aviv University entitled: “Steps for a Non-Violent Society – Implementation of the Students’ Rights Law” The conference addressed the dangerous phenomenon of violence and delinquency in today’s schools and how that could impact tomorrow’s citizens.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Negev and Galilee Silvan Shalom, who initiated the “Students’ Rights Law”, aroused great support and enthusiasm when he spoke of the importance of Israeli youths acquiring a higher education and the need to take care of their rights. “I think the “Students’ Law” needs to be implemented much better than it is currently.” Jutie Kanis, an expert on advocacy and policy design – UNICEF Branch Geneva, also addressed the topic, while Professor Izak Katz, President of the Research Institute Maagar Mohot, presented important survey results with alarming data:
- Many students are fearful because of the violence, threats, drugs and weapons in today’s schools.
- 15% of students indicate that they don’t feel school is a safe place.
A panel discussion, moderated by Ms. Yael Kafri (Faculty for Law & School of Education, Tel Aviv University) discussed the reality of implementing laws for students’ rights. Participants included: MK Ronit Tirosh – Former Executive Director of the Ministry of Education, Attorney Moriel Matalon Chairman of UNICEF Israel, Honorable Judge Galit Mor Vigodzki – President of Magistrates’ Courts for Youth, Mr. Ali Agabria – Director of “Nacal Iron”, and Ms. Eti Benyamin – Chairman of the National Parents’ Leadership.
MK Tirosh, one of the initiators of the “Student Rights’ Law”, explained the scope of the problem that exists in Israel. MK Tirosh praised the work of The Citizens’ Empowerment Center in Israel in raising awareness of this issue. She added that preserving the rights of the child, and maintaining his honor, will bring tranquility to the education system and will help Israeli society move forward.
Yuval Lipkin – Executive Director CECI – served as event moderator. This conference was the third in a series of conferences that CECI is promoting with the School of Education and the Certified Club for Management and Policy at Tel Aviv University. A second conference at Tel Aviv University is being planned for January 25, 2011, entitled: “Digitization in the Education – An E-Learning Education System in Israel”. Event keynote speaker will be Minister of Education Gideon Saar.
Inspector Ms. Tova Ben Ari, head of the implementation of students’ rights in the Ministry of Education, concluded the conference.
The conference was covered by various national media venues (newspapers, radio and television).