When Shortage Coexists With Surplus of Teachers: The Case of Arab Teachers in Israel

Ayman K. Agbaria, Halleli Pinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article explores the nexus between pre-service teacher education polices and the supply and demand of minority teachers. It problematizes the recent reports on teacher shortages in Israel, which tend to focus on the shortage of Jewish teachers while dealing with the surplus of Arab teachers only tangentially. Specifically, this article examines how teacher education policy in Israel generates a surplus supply of Arab teachers through 3 mechanisms: (a) the disregard for the cultural needs of Arab teachers and their exclusion from policymaking circles; (b) the Ministry of Education's budgeting criteria, which entice colleges to enroll more Arab students, especially when the enrollment of Jewish students is in decline; and (c) the admission policies of teacher education colleges, which contribute to the overrepresentation of Arab students in these colleges and allow the enrollment of students above the quota approved annually by the Ministry of Education.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-83
Number of pages15
JournalDiaspora, Indigenous, and Minority Education
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Over the past decade, several committees were called on to examine the state of teacher education colleges. A number of policy trends arose from the reports published by these committees. These included consistent demands to decrease the number of colleges for teacher education; continuous pressure to transfer the teacher education colleges from the direct supervision and budgeting of the Ministry of Education to that of the Council for Higher Education; a strong

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Education


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