Monday, November 4, 2013

Israeli women

You would think, with a casual glance at the international comparisons, that Israel is doing great when it comes to the status of women. On issues like education and employment, the base lines look favorable. For example ...

51% of Israeli women ages 25 to 34 have at least a post-secondary education, compared with 42% of other western countries.

57% of Israeli women ages 15 to 64 are employed, on par with the average for other western countries.

And yet .... behind these averages lies a very different picture.
For some of our discussions we've been looking at two areas in particular, education and employment.

In the field of education, there are some really significant gaps in the education of disadvantaged women, even though there's been a lot of progress:

(1) In 2010, 59% of Ethiopian women and 41% of Arab-Israel women didn't complete high school, compared with only 5% of all Jewish women.
Many of these women hadn't even finished 8th grade.

(2) In 2010, Ethiopian and Arab-Israeli women had much lower rates than Jewish Israelis for getting secondary degrees: 20% for Ethiopians and 32% for Arab-Israelis, compared with 67% of all Jews. (Although you should note that both Ethiopians and Arab-Israeli women made considerable progress between 2001 and 2010—from 12% to 20% for Ethiopians, and 18% to 32% for Arab-Israelis).

(3) Passing Matriculation exams: Among recent high school graduates, the gaps are declining further. In 2009-10, 43% of Arab-Israeli 12th-grade girls and 35% for Ethiopian 12th-grade girls scored high enough on their matriculation exams to meet university entrance requirements, compared with 65% of all Jewish 12th-grade girls.

Girls from all groups are outperforming boys, particularly among the disadvantaged groups. The matriculation rates among boys were 28% for Arab-Israelis and 18% for Ethiopians, compared with 58% for all Jews.

If you want more information and sources on these findings, message me, or contact my colleagues at Myers-JDC-Brookdale. If you want to receive this blog on a regular basis by email (about twice a week, depending on what else I'm up to), sign up in the top-right box where it says "follow" ...

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