The Ministry of Education continued In 2018 to budget the religious high school students at huge sums and to discriminate against secular and Arab students, according to the ministry's data on how the ministry distributed the budget. The new Minister of Education, Rafi Peretz, who has been prominent in his recent recommendation to the lesbian and gay community to undergo conversion treatments from their sexual orientation, sought to increase the budgets allocated to religious students even more.
The Ministry of Education prided itself on narrowing the gaps, but such a policy is not implemented at all in high schools, but only in primary and junior high schools, and it is not implemented in a way that reduces gaps. Even in primary schools, Arab students from a weak economic background still receive a lower budget than Jewish students whose economic situation is the same, so that the ministry's affirmative action policy operates among Jewish students only and excludes Arab students who do not receive equal opportunities.
Between 2014-2017, the budget for religious high school students increased by 30%, the highest rate, but in the past year they continued to rise by 7%, so that today the Ministry of Education funds every religious high school student NIS 40,300 a year - 29% of the budget allocated to secular students in the state schools, which made do with a budget of NIS 31,300. The budget of state religious students is 65% higher than the budget given to Arab students. The Arab students remained discriminated against, with a budget of NIS 24,500 per student per year.
The budget of ultra-Orthodox schools is considered relatively low, since the vast majority of ultra-Orthodox schools for boys do not teach the core curriculum and do not serve students for matriculation. In primary schools, the cost per religious student is higher - NIS 17,700 per religious student, compared with NIS 15,2,000 for Jewish students in the state education system.
An Arab student from the weakest background will receive a budget that is 14% lower than that of a Jewish student from an identical economic background. An Arab student from the weakest background will receive a budget of NIS 18,300 a year, while the weakest Jewish student will be budgeted at NIS 21,100 a year.
In junior high schools, the situation is even worse: An Arab student from the weakest economic background will receive a budget of NIS 21,400, while a Jewish student from the weakest economic background will receive a budget of NIS 27,500, almost 30 percent higher.
This situation is also reflected in the list of schools receiving the highest budget from the Ministry of Education, which mainly includes religious schools. The primary school with the highest budget per student is Ohr Simcha, the religious one from Kfar Chabad, where each student received a budget of NIS 63,300.