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Apprenticeship and Vocational Education and Training in Israel

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One of a series of studies on vocational education and training, this review assesses the apprenticeship system and vocational education and training in Israel and provides policy recommendations.

Israel has experienced strong economic growth over the last decade, and labour shortages are observed in many sectors and occupations. At the same time, inequity and disadvantage in some population groups are rising. This report suggests several ways in which Israel might reform its vocational and apprenticeship programmes so that they effectively support the Israeli economy by providing the skills in demand on the labour market, and improve life chances and social mobility of individuals.

The report argues for an expansion and integration of apprenticeship programmes into the mainstream upper secondary system, and development of systematic work-based learning placements in selected school-based vocational programmes. Currently vocational education and training in Israel is fragmented and students and employers often find it difficult to navigate. To address this challenge, the report recommends creating a single strategic body that will plan and guide policy development on vocational education and training, and champion it within government. A relatively large share of adults in Israel has low basic skills, particularly among Arab Israelis and Haredi Jews. Addressing basic skills weaknesses in these populations should be a priority.

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Improving literacy and numeracy in vocational education and training (VET) programmes in Israel

The basic skills of numeracy and literacy are positively associated with a range of important economic and social outcomes both for individuals and countries. In Israel, the basic skills of the adult population are weak in comparison to other OECD countries. This chapter argues that, in the context of vocational education and training (VET) programmes, improving the basic skills of Israeli population would lead to economic and non-economic benefits such as stronger productivity and a more equal society. Israel should ensure adequate levels of literacy and numeracy in all VET students, identifying the weakest performers and targeting teaching resources on them to improve their basic skills. Chapter 5 also argues that Israel may build basic skills education systematically into adult programmes. Basic skills are particularly low among Arab Israelis and Haredi Jews. Addressing basis skills weaknesses in the disadvantaged and underperforming populations should be a priority.

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