The EFA 2000 Assessment: Country Reports Homepage of the World Education Forum
   Palestinian Authority
Contents of country report Homepage of country reports Country reports listed alphabetically Country reports by region

Next Page

Part I Descriptive Section


The Ministry of Culture and Education extends its gratitude, to the members of the National team of the Education for All, the Ministries, the national and international Associations and individuals that collaborated technically and financially to the preparation of this report. We especially thank the Central Body for Palestinian Census, the Social Affairs, Labor, Sports and Youth, and Health ministries, the Secretariat for children in the Ministry of Planning and international cooperation, the UNESCO, UNICEF, the United Nations Relief and Work Agency for Palestine refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) and the Center of Measurement and Evaluation.

The ministry also extends its thanks to Mr. Ibrahim Daqaq for his devotion and the great efforts he exerted in the narration of the report, handed by officials and staff members from the Ministry’s General Directorate for educational planning and development, the General Directorate for Public education, the General Directorate for field follow-up and development, the General Directorate for International and Public relations.

The Ministry shall publish this national report in a better presentation in the coming two months to enable all persons involved in culture, education and development to benefit from it in Palestine and worldwide.


 The work on the Palestinian National Report started after the establishment of the National Palestinian Authority by the beginning of 1999. The report covers two educational periods:

The period under the control of the Occupation Authority (the military Rule in Gaza strip, the West Bank and Jerusalem that was called later on the Israeli Civil Administration in Gaza and the West Bank), that goes from 1967 to 1994 (first period) and the period that started after the Oslo Agreement in September 13, 1993 (the second period) during which the Palestinian National Authority took the Education in charge.

The first part of the report gives a general view on the educational situation in Palestine including Jerusalem. It exposes some indicators related to the strategies currently adopted, the decision-making process, the activities concerning Education for All, the cooperation and investment in Education at the first period, a description of the progress towards the goals and the discussion of the strategy and plan of action, dealing with awareness, willingness and achieved capacities, and an evaluation of the progress during the first period.

The second part analyses the educational situation in Palestine quantitatively and qualitatively, by considering and analyzing 18 indicators suggested by UNESCO. The third part includes the most important recommendations for the future, formulated during the consultation meetings of the National group with active persons in the society, on the role of the formal education in the coming period. The analysis will be supported by statistics that will shed more light on it.


 The first Period1 (1990 – 1994)

 Nothing proves that the occupation authority was interested in adopting the goals of Education for All, as mentioned in the documents of Jomtien Conference, in the management of the educational process in Palestine. As shown in the forthcoming explanations, the basic concern of the occupation authority, according to the Palestinian experience (in comparison with Israel’s interest for culture and education in its territories), focused on the fulfillment of the minimum educational needs for Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza strip and Jerusalem, along with a great neglecting for the quality provided. In brief, the first period suffered a severe educational and cultural regression: the Palestinian Ministry of Culture and Education (the Ministry) had to make up for its consequences after its establishment in 1994.

Goals and Strategies of Education

It is impossible to talk about homogeneous goals and strategies for education in Palestine, adopted by the concerned parties, under the Israeli occupation from 1967 to 1994. While one can talk about as many educational goals and strategies as the number of parties involved.

The report exposes hereinafter some strategies adopted by different educational administrations that were active in Palestine during the above-mentioned period.

1- The management of the educational Process – Palestine Liberation Organization (the Organization)

The strategy adopted by the organization can be described as resisting to that of the occupation authority from one side and a strategy of development and improvement of the Palestinian identity from the other side.

The Organization’s administration for culture and education became very active in supporting the Palestinian Education in Palestine and in the Diaspora. In spite of the Israeli ban on its activities in Palestine, the Organization undertook two main activities. The first one lied in providing funds to private schools directly and through the Palestinian-Jordanian joint committee for the support of the resistance of the occupied territory indirectly. It was active in granting scholarships to many higher education students outside Palestine. The organization also took in charge the management of a part of the Higher Education in Palestine by opening Jerusalem’s University. The second activity lied in disclosing the practices of the occupation authority in the media, and mobilizing international efforts to support education in Palestine.

1 For more information about the geographic and demographic situation, the political environment and the problems of watching the educational situations, refer to annex 1.

1-1 Management of the educational Process – the occupation authority.

The policy of the occupation Authority in managing the educational process in Palestine can be summed up by saying that it is a cultural and educational rip-off 2 based on a philosophy that leads to a national nihilism, intersperses dependence, weakens the individual and collective initiative and creativity, and raises doubts about the existence of the Palestinian identity. The occupation authority tampered with the educational curricula and set new educational and vocational programs in order to meet the needs of the Israeli market, without being necessarily in harmony with the needs of the ýPalestinian community. Furthermore, it did not provide the various educational institutions with laboratories and libraries but worked to weaken the remaining ones. This policy was accompanied by a reduction of the extracurricular activities in schools. Some of these points will be detailed in the second part of the report.

The report enumerates hereinafter the measures taken by the occupation authority as for culture and education through modifying the curricula that were applied in Palestine or replacing them by Israeli curricula as well as the measures taken against schools, teachers and pupils, and the results arising from its policy on culture and education in Palestine. Some of these measures are:

    1. The deletion from the textbooks adopted of whatsoever related to Palestine history and the Palestinian cause before 1948, the UN Resolutions in this respect, the struggle of the Arabs for their liberation from the colonization and the Arab heroism. It cancelled Palestine Historical map from the curriculum.
    2. The deletion of the relationship between the Muslims and the Jewish at the time of the Prophet, and what is related to Palestine people, their moral, values and culture and the deletion of whatever criticizes the ancient and modern Jewish history, the Zionist movement and the Zionist efforts to dominate and occupy Palestine and establish the Jewish state.
    3. The introduction of the Israeli curriculum between 1971-1972 and 1972-1973 in Jerusalem’s Palestinian schools. In 1973-1974, the Israeli Authority resumed implementing the Jordanian Curriculum in the Secondary Cycle; the same curriculum was applied in the preparatory cycle in 1978-1979 and in the primary cycle in 1980-1981, while the Hebrew Language and Israeli civic education remained asin the Israeli curriculum. At the same time, books in mathematics and sciences that became insufficient were adopted.3

2 The United Nations Organizations condemned the educational policy of the occupation authority in many occasions. Refer to the UN resolutions in this regard in:

The Palestinian studies Association, the United Nations Resolutions related to Palestine and the Arab Israeli conflict

Volume 1 (1947- 1974) April 1993

Volume 2 (1975 – 1981) January 1994.

Volume 3 (1982 – 1986) September 1994.

Volume 4 (1987 – 1991) March 1998.

3 Interview with Cayer and Arafat, the director of the Secretariat of the national plan for Palestinian children 07/10/1999 – Ramallah. Dr Arafat raised the example of the lack of the books in life skills, and they are very different from those that were adopted in Israel.

4. The closing of schools, including kindergartens by force for days or months on many occasions, especially during the Intifada 1978 – 1993. In 1987-1988, all West Bank schools were closed during the second trimester and then were reopened gradually. The primary cycle was reopened after a 107-day closure, the preparatory cycle after a 118-day closure (approximately 50% of the school year of basic education), and the secondary cycle after a 121-day closure. During the Intifada,4 schools were besieged and stormed; more than 31 schools were turned into military casernes or prisons. In other situations, the occupation authority divided one school into two, sometimes it turned schools for both scientific and arts classes into schools for scientific or arts classes and some other secondary schools were turned into preparatory ones. In addition to all that, it changed the names of a lot of schools that imply national means. In 1986-1987, the occupation authority undertook a wide process of transfer for schools and pupils in the preparatory and secondary cycle in Gaza strip, and from the cities to the suburbs, which affected the relationship between the student and the teacher, and the student and his environment.

Educational skills and capacities were deported; the average of university student admission in the field of culture and education became very limited. The Authority resorted to appoint underqualified teachers for university teaching (holder of the intermediary diploma and the secondary education certificate); it failed to train teachers. Moreover, it deported teachers, active on the national and patriotic level away from the culture and education process and adopted the policy of differentiation and favoritism among teachers, forced early retirement, arbitrary transfer and termination of services of some teachers, suspension of the work of some teachers depriving them from their salaries and allowances during the period of stop, freezing the grades and salary adjustment of teachers, calling them to investigations, prison, arrest, imposing the house arrest, deportation and ban of travel.

The imposition of punitive measures against students, like expelling, arresting, and transferring them and imposing fines on them, kidnapping them causing sometimes fatal injuries or permanent disabilities in many cases.

The Israeli policy relating to culture and education in Jerusalem is manifested differently also. In spite of the unilateral imposition of the Israeli control on Jerusalem, and the implementation of the Israeli law in it, the Israeli ministry for knowledge and Jerusalem’s municipality failed to safeguard equity in the procurement of educational services for the Arab schools and the Jewish ones.

4 Halabi, Oussama, Jerusalem – the consequences of "annexing Jerusalem to Israel" on the rights and situation of the Arab citizens; 2nd edition 1994, Jerusalem, the Palestinian Academic Association for international Affairs, p 57.

1-3 the management of the educational process – The United Nations Work and Relief Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (the Agency)5

The Agency adopted the Jordanian curriculum in its schools in the West Bank, and the Egyptian one in Gaza Strip during the first period.

The number of class sections in 1975-1976 at the Agency’s school amounted to 2500 sections in 220 schools accommodating 103,360 pupils in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. In 1992-1993, the number reached 1,214 sections in the West Bank accommodating 42,310 pupils and in Gaza Strip, 2219 sections accommodating 104,709 pupils. The number of sections in the West Bank became in 1995-1996, 1,226 sections accommodating 45,812 pupils; and in Gaza Strip, 2,716 sections accommodating 129,494 pupils. School buildings did not go along with the increase of the number of the Agency’s pupils, generating thus overcrowdedness in class sections.

The increase of the number of class sections and pupils enrolled in the Agency’s schools in 1995-1996 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip was very limited.

1-4 The management of the educational process – the private sector.

Education in the private sector schools was always influenced by the philosophy of the parties in charge of the administration of the school. This situation remained after the Israeli occupation in 1967. The educational methods were different in its schools despite its adoption of the formal curricula.

The private sector in Palestine showed a great vitality during the first period. It worked on increasing class occupancy rate and the filling of a part of the public schools imbalance. It contributed to the stop of the education quality deterioration. The number of class sections reached 506 sections in 68 schools accommodating 12,775 pupils in 1975-1976 and increased in 1993-1994 to reach 1,116 sections (an increase of 120%) in 111 schools (an increase of 63%) accommodating 28,131 pupils (an increase of 120%) in the West Bank and Gaza Strip (excluding Jerusalem). The disproportion in the increase rate of the pupils and the class sections numbers with the number of classes reflects the distribution of schools between the cities and villages and the expansion of some school compounds.

As for the Higher Education, the private sector established the first Palestinian University in Beer Zeit in 1973, and 10 other universities and institutions later on. At the same time, the Higher Commission for literacy was formed and in 1977, the Higher Education Council was formed.

In addition to the increase of school numbers and the expansion of pupils’ accommodation, undertaken by the private sector, many non-governmental associations handed the teacher and education. In spite of this, the private sector failed to solve educational problems resulting from the social and behavioral discharges generated by the deterioration of the political situation.

5 The Agency was established by a UN decision on December 8, 1949. The Agency took in charge the relief and work of Palestine refugees. The assignment included the education of the refugee children registered in their place of residence. The educational services of the Agency developed gradually.

During the Palestinian Intifada, private initiatives were raised to manage the crisis that caused the closure of the schools, the chasing of teachers and pupils and the deterioration of the security situation. To overstep the closure of schools, the Palestinians created an educational system outside the school frames, with a limited rate of success.

Concerning the quality of education and the promotion of the social values, many voluntary associations were created and worked in the culture, health, agriculture, children care, youth and women fields. To promote this approach, the voluntary work was considered as requiring a specialization in some higher education institutions.

2. The cooperation in education.

There was no cooperation between the Ministry of Knowledge, and Jerusalem’s municipality and the Occupation Authority from one side, or between them and the PLO, the Agency and the private sector from the other side in the management of the educational process in Palestine. On the contrary, confrontation prevailed between them and the PLO, while tension prevailed with the Agency and the private sector. A relative coopwas set between the Agency and the private sector and among the private sector institutions.

3. Investing in Education for All.

No successive and documented reports are available to show the sums spent by the Occupation Authority on services in Palestine including the expenditures on education. The occupation Authority always refused to publish the budget allotted to culture and education during the first period. The publication of culture and education budgets in Jerusalem is still subject to some restrictions even after the end of the first period6.

The attempt to determine the destination of the fund flow from other sources in the first period (1990-1994) faced many problems. For instance, the Jordanian support for the educational process in Palestine came – according to the information available - under allowances for the education and the press without specifying the amounts to be spent on each. According to the salary pay roll, there was no specification for the salaries of the education personnel and those of staff members who received a part of the funds. Moreover, no information are available regarding the funds transferred by the Jordanian government before the creation of the Palestinian–Jordanian joint committee to support the resistance in the occupied territory (the Joint committee). There are no available sources that specify the funds transferred by the Jordanian government after the creation of the joint committee7 from 1979 to 1985, or the sum spent from the budget of the Jordanian plan for development in the occupied territory.

6 Refer to the speech of the Israeli minister of knowledge in the daily Al Qods (published in Jerusalem) concerning the deterioration of the educational situation in the Palestinian side of Jerusalem. Al Qods Tuesday 10/8/1999.

7 the committee was established by a decision of the conference of the 9th Arab Summit (Baghdad) in 1978.

This applies also to the support provided by Arab sources – Twinning of Arab cities with Palestinian cities in the mid 70s and direct and indirect donations – and non-Arab ones8.

The second Period (1994 – 1999)

1- Heading towards the goals

A radical change occurred after the occupation Authority released the education process in Palestine (except for Jerusalem), and the Palestinian ministry of culture and education took it over. The transitory period was not very easy for two reasons: the short notice within which the handing over took place and the big problems inherited by the ministry from the occupation authority.

The ministry works on developing future clear visions for the Palestinian education, that exceed the previous experience, and on filling the backwardness gap in culture and education, left by the occupation authority in Palestine, yearning for a future that recovers the attachment of the coming generations to their history and clarifies their way to the future. Stemming from this, the ministry focuses on improving the quality of education (the critical and analytical mind, the acquisition of life-skills etc…) by finalizing and implementing the first Palestinian curriculum, improving the educational environment, training teacher, introducing modern techniques, and the society participation to the educational process. This is in addition to its concern to fulfill the growing demand for additional school benches, which goes along with the normal demographic increase and the return of some Palestinian refugees. In other words, the Ministry works to mobilize different sources to promote education in Palestine.

The Ministry works on: 1) preparing the new generation to develop its capacities and make use of its own abilities to be able to look forward to the future with an optimistic and confident spirit, by considering school a mean that helps to acquire various skills and the flexibility required for a positive reaction with the surrounding environment. 2) Helping the Palestinian generations to understand themselves and know the best choices for their society while granting them the capacity to interact with different cultures in a critical mind. 3) installing and developing the innovative capacities for the coming generations and safeguarding the coherence of the society in the light of the deep and rapidly growing change worldwide.

8 in this case, the only thing to do is to present different indicators about the issue. Here are some indicators: the unprocessed information taken from the records of the department of the general budget and the Ministry of the occupied territory Affairs in Amman show that the amount that was referred to the culture, education and press sector, in the West Bank (1977-1984) reached 10.8 m Jordanian Dinars (15.1 m$). And since 1979, up to 1985 the Arab countries granted the fund for the support of the occupied territory 372.7 m $ out of which the culture and education field was supposed to get 36258306 Jordanian Dinars (50,761,628$); the amount of 34,576,055 Jordanian dinars was transferred at that time (48,406,477) (95% approximately). The amount of the cash transfers (the joint committee, private institutions, the Jordanian Government, the Arab countries and UNDP) that arrived to Palestine between 1968-1975 was estimated at 1753 million Jordanian dinars (2454.2m $). It is possible to get limited information about two kinds of contributions due to the availability of some information in this respect: the contributions of private American associations backed by the American Government (refer to Benvesnisti, Meron, U.S, Funded Projects in the West Bank Palestinian Sector 1977-82 pp2-15) and the contributions of the UNDP – Program of Assistance for the Palestinians during the two previous decades (December 20 1978 to April 1999). In spite of all this, they are not sufficient to define the investment in education since 1990.

The achievement of such goals requires – according to the Ministry – the provision of basic abilities for the coming generations including: 1) Acquisition of a sound and regular language and the ability to use it as well as the different skills such as reading, writing, listening, observation, in addition to the preparation of the pupils to acquire an international language. 2) The development of the mental capacities of the coming generations to enable them to undertake basic scientific operations such as analogy, estimation, evaluation and differentiation. 3) the widening of the understanding of the coming generations for their surrounding world and enabling them to use modern technologies such as computers and other scientific equipment.

2 – the Strategy and planning

the Ministry followed at the beginning, short-term plans but it is working currently on finalizing the five-year plan9. The Ministry focuses now on setting a Palestinian curriculum that takes into account the improvement and unification of the positive aspects of the two curricula (the Jordanian and the Egyptian) applied in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The curriculum document was approved by the Palestinian legislative council on 31/3/1998. Its narration is to be finalized to start implementing it at the beginning of the school year 2000-2001, for the first and six grades, and the second and seventh grade in 2001-2002, until it is totally implemented by 2004-2005. During the five-year plan, the ministry will undertake a periodic review for the plan and the curriculum to improve, develop, and adapt them in the light of the experience of the Palestinian society, and in the light of the latest scientific, economic and social occurrences locally and worldwide. After the adoption of the plan, the Ministry will issue executive detailed and spaced out plans that meet the cultural and educational needs in every Palestinian province.

Many non-formal education sectors have a big role in the five-year plan of the Ministry of Culture and Education (2000-2004). The ministry seeks through including them in the five-year plan to upgrade them to complement the educational process in its different aspects.

3 – the structure of the ministry and the decision-making process.

The Minister of culture and education is at top of the decision-making process pyramid that includes the adoption of the curriculum and the implementation of the five-year plan as soon as the legislative council approves it and the President of the national Palestinian Authority signs it. The minister is assisted in the decision making process by a committee formed of its under secretary and the two assistant under secretary (the assistant under-secretary for cultural and educational affairs in the west Bank and the assistant under-secretary for cultural and educational affairs in Gaza Strip) and the Directors General of the Ministry. Studies and the educational implementation, follow-up and supervision are the responsibilities of 15 general directorates headed by directors general including four women10.

9 for the matrix of the five-year plan, refer to annex no: 2.

10 Concerning the structure of the Ministry, refer to annex no 3.

4 – Cooperation in education

The cooperation in education is achieved through many channels; the education for all national group that includes all concerned public and private associations is an example. Through this group, the efforts of all public and social Palestinian associations are mobilized to make a success out of this project. The wide participation in setting the Palestinian curriculum and the five-year plan constitutes another important contribution of both public and private communities.

The committee of the five-year plan constitutes an important instrument to coordinate between the associations concerned with culture and education, and include their aspiration in the plan. As for the committee of the Palestinian curriculum setting, that is formed of a group of experts in culture and education, in spite of its specialized aspect, it is bound to two matters: the expansion of its field of contacts with the community at the preparatory stage, and the defense of the plan that it is elaborating before a national team representing the public and private communities.

The relationship of the ministry with the public and private communities is expanded through many means. Indeed, the ministry publishes specialized studies and an educational periodical. It is in permanent contact with the audio-visual and written media through its general administration of public and international Affairs. In the frame of its work, the general administration calls on for a series of seminars, of press and media conferences during which the officials expose projects undertaken by the Ministry, problems that they are facing in achieving such projects and listen to some opinions in this respect. The Ministry organizes several workshops and training sessions.

In spite of the policy of the Ministry that is encouraging the cooperation with official and private parties, there is still a big need to a wider cooperation. There are some obstacles resulting from the lack for a sufficient coordination and professionalism in the way of dealing, and making contacts and the performance in general. Nevertheless, many opportunities are available to enhance the cooperation between the ministry and the private associations, to improve the professional performance and get rid of the existing inconveniences.

In addition to the culture and education Ministry, other official ministries and associations are active in the formal and non-formal education field, such as the social Affairs, Health, Labor, Higher Education, and Youth, Sports and Culture ministries.

The Ministry of social Affairs is active in public fields like the sustainability of the society development, the provision of a decent life for Palestinians, the improvement of the living conditions and "the reconstruction of the Palestinian society".

The activities of the ministry of social affairs intersect with those of Higher Education, Health, Labor, and Youth ministries, and some public and private associations especially in terms of capacity-building programs for disabled people, the intensive women training program, the provision of appropriate conditions for child care and development, and the supervision of the capacity building programs for prisoners  

released from the occupation prisons11.

The Ministry of Health participates in many activities related to culture and education.

For instance, health teaching and school health, oral health in collaboration with the ministry of culture and education. To enhance its role at this level, the ministry of health worked on the modernization of Ibn Sina (Avicenna) nursing school in Ramallah to grant a baccalaureate in nursing to its students. It established the faculty of public health in Gaza, and upgraded the practical nurses to legal nurses. To achieve its educational goals, the ministry started implementing the principle of the in-service training12.

On the official level, three parties collaborate to supervise the education and vocational training (the Government, the Agency and the private sector)13. The narration of the Strategy for education, vocational and technical training in Palestine (Education, Higher Education, and Labor ministries) is the first step towards getting rid of the scattering that occurred in this field during the first period; enhancing the coordination between its individuals and the local community, the unification of its supervision party, resorting to benefit from the limited resources and ameliorate them; and linking it to the track of academic teaching.

The Ministry of Youth and Sports enhances its role in participating to the cultural and educational process through conferences and workshops dealing with various administrative, psychological and cultural aspects. In its activities it deals with subjects like: drugs, early marriage, democracy, conflict management etc… the ministry organizes local camps for the youth, participates to camps outside the country and receives youth delegations from outside Palestine.

The Agency and the private sector (humanitarian and private associations) contribute to the non-formal education. The number of centers run by the private sector from 01/01/1998 to 31/12/1998 in Palestine reached 184 cultural centers (108 in 1994, 153 in 1996, and 129 in 1997) out of which 110 located in the West Bank and 74 in Gaza Strip.

5 – Investing in education.

Investment in the educational process was based during the second period on many sources, headed by the allowances of the Palestinian General Budget for education, and the expenditures of the other ministries on educational activities, the expenditures of the Agency and of the private sector, and the donations of donor parties for the educational process15.

The share of the budget allotted for education amounts to 13%. The salaries absorb a growing average of the ministry budget since 1994, knowing that they are still very low compared to the increasing living cost16. Moreover, the income of the educational

11 interview of the ministry of social Affairs (Dr Abdallah Hourani, Khawla Mansour) 28/11/1998.

12 interview with the under secretary of the Ministry Dr Mounzer Sharif 25/11/1998.

13 the Palestinian central census department, 1995, census on education in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, a series of reports about the actual situation (5). Ramallah – the West Bank p 28.

14 Statement of the Director General for Youth Affairs Mr. Hassan Khatib dated 21/6/1999.

15 For the budget of the ministry refer to the second part of the report.

16 for more details about the living conditions in Palestine, refer to the ministry of planning and international cooperation – the national team to fight poverty, Palestine, poverty report, November 1998.

personnel are being eroded due to the correlation between the Palestinian economy and the Israeli one and its influence through its fluctuations. The data show that the expenditures on education material structures started to increase clearly in 1997 and 1998.

Table no: 1

The budget of the culture and education ministry for the years 1994 to 1999 in USD*



Budget Allowances

+ salaries

Expenditures without the salaries

























* The exchange rate for the following sums is 4 shekel/USD

** Up to 7/8/1999.

Source: The General Administration of finance, the ministry of culture and education.

The budget of the culture and education almost does not include a developing budget; in fact, the salaries absorb around 90% of it. On the other hand, donors17 completely cover the budget for development, research, training, and equipment.

Table no: 2 The sums that the donors for education committed themselves to pay and the actual amounts received between 1994 and 1998. (1000 USD)

The year

Amount promised

Amount paid

Average of payment





















Taken from:

Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation,MOPIC’s 1998 Fourth Quarterly Monitoring Report of

Donors’ Assistance, December 31, 1998.

On the other hand, the expenditures of the Ministry of social Affairs on education between 1997-1999 amounted to 3,426,978 Shekels (856745$) as shown in the table no:3  

17 It is difficult to define the donations as for the quantity and way of spending the money due to the multiple channels through which it is donated.

Table no:3

Gross expenditures of the ministry of Social Affairs on education by dollar*


Fees and textbooks

Missions and training sessions

Rewards of youth training centers students

Grand total





















* The exchange rate adopted is 4 shekels/USD.

The expenditures of the ministry of Social Affairs on education increased in 1998 by 11% compared to the expenditures in 1997, and by three times during the seven first months of 1999 compared to the previous year. The expenditures of the Ministry of Labor on education and vocational training between 1995-1999 (up to 31/7/1999) amounted to 12,925,393.87 shekels (around 3,231,383 USD)18 i.e with an average of 718,000 USD per year.

The Higher Education institutions in Palestine received the amounts of money mentioned in table 4 from the EU and from the National Palestinian Authority.

Table no:4

Sums donated to the Palestinian universities through the Ministry of Higher Education


Amount promised (million $)

Amounts donated



For universities through the ministry



For universities through the ministry



For universities through the ministry



Not received



5 million from the Authority Budget and 9 million in the reserves

Source: The director of Administration and Finance of the Ministry of Higher Education

The Agency spent on education in the West Bank between 1989-1999 (August) around 267,237,234 USD, out of which 55,505,689 were spent on education and technical and vocational training, i.e almost 20% of the total amount. The rest was spent on basic education19. It spent the sum of 495,131,059 USD in Gaza Strip20, and for the same period.

On the other hand, no information is available as for the expenditures of the private sector on education. Nevertheless, the surveys undertaken by the Palestinian census department about the expenditures on education according to the volume of the family in the West Bank and Gaza Strip provides some indicators that help to have an indirect idea about these expenditures. The above-mentioned surveys show that the expenditures of a family of 1 to 5 members in the West Bank (1995-1996) on

18 letter of the Minister of Labor, Mr. Rafik Natcheh dated 2/9/1999. (exchange rate: 4shekels=1$)

19 the book of Lamis Alami, Chief education Program – UNRWA – the West Bank dated 19 September 1999.

20 The book of Ahmad Moussa UNRWA’s Chief education Program, (Ahmad Moussa) – Gaza dated 3/10/1999. The book does not detail the expenditures.

education per month vary between 2.19 and 18.38 dinars (i.e. 3.13 to 26.26$)21, while the expenditures for the same category of families amounted to 4.24 Jordanian Dinar per month (6.1$) in Gaza Strip. As for the other categories, (6-7, 8-9, 10+) the expenditures in the West Bank reached 25.15 (35.9$) for the first category and 36.87 and 33.23 dinars (52.67 and 47.47 $) for the second and third category. In Gaza Strip, it reached 13.39; 18.59; and 21.97 dinars (19.13; 26.56; 30.21$) respectively. In comparison with the period from January to June 1997, the average of the cost amounts to 14.37 dinars (20.52 $) in the West Bank and 13.88 (19.83$) in Gaza Strip22.

The available information related to the general expenditures on education do not describe the share of the basic education (1-6). But since the basic education stage in Palestine lasts from the 1st to the 10th year, one can consider that what was spent on education by the public and private communities is like investing in basic education from one hand. On the other hand, the fluctuation of the modification average of what the donors were committed to give for the ministry of culture and education show a high level of monopoly practices by those parties on the educational process in Palestine, and the difficulties faced by the Palestinian planning while trying to set educational plans for the future.

21 The exchange rate adopted was: 0.7 Jordanian Dinar/USD.

22 the Palestinian census department 1997. The survey on family expenditures and consumption – 1997 the living levels in the Palestinian territories – the final report (October 1995 – September 1996), and the biannual report (January – June 1997).

Contents Next Page