The effect of Israeli students' socioeconomic background on their achievements in the matriculation examinations

28/10/2008 |  Tsur Shay
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Welfare Policy and Labor Market
Shay Tsur and Noam Zussman
Abstract
This study examines the differences between the achievement in matriculation examinations of Israeli students in different education streams and from various socioeconomic backgrounds over the schooling years 1992/93 through 2004/05. It was found that the gaps between the achievement of students from weak socioeconomic backgrounds and those from strong backgrounds narrowed during the period, while some of the gaps in indicators of excellence widened. The increase in the share of the Jewish ultra-orthodox and Arab students moderated the improvement in overall achievements over the period. On the other hand, the advancement in students' socio-economic background within the education streams enhanced their achievements. All in all, there was a non-negligible improvement in the Israeli students' achievement in matriculation examinations (without calibration of examinations' difficulty over time).
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