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News Link • Israel - Palestine

Israeli textbook 'bad for Arabs, bad for Jews'

• http://www.jonathan-cook.net,

Leaders of Israel's large Palestinian minority have begun creating an alternative syllabus for Arab schools, in what they are terming "a revolutionary" step towards educational autonomy.

It will be the first time in Israel's history that the Palestinian minority has tried to wrest control of the curriculum taught in Arab schools from the Israeli education ministry.

The move follows the ministry's decision to revise the civics textbook, a central part of Israel's matriculation exam.

Traditionally, civics has been the only subject that uses the same textbook in both Jewish and Arab schools.

The changes have triggered a wave of protest from Israeli civics teachers' associations. They have urged members to boycott the new textbook, due to be published in the next few weeks.

The move is likely to face stiff resistance from Israeli officials. Successive governments have refused to countenance educational autonomy for Israel's Palestinian minority.

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