Occupied Jerusalem

- The “We Are All Mary” Global Forum launched on the first of March the digital and field campaign “My School in Jerusalem” to save education in the occupied city, which will extend until next October to announce its final results at the annual international conference in Jerusalem Istanbul.

The campaign focuses on filling the gaps that weaken education in Jerusalem at the level of the curriculum and infrastructure for schools and students, through awareness-raising and material measures that start from the headquarters of the “We are all Mary” forum in Turkey to include Arab and Islamic countries and reach European countries and parliaments as well, as the project official said in the forum Gulnar Fahim for Al Jazeera Net.

7 billion shekels to Judaize education in Jerusalem # My School In Jerusalem # Save Education In Jerusalem pic.twitter.com/TI1xWQXatO

- We are all Maryam (@weareallmaryam1) March 3, 2022

Field financial support

The most prominent measures that distinguished the “My School in Jerusalem” campaign from other similar campaigns is the provision of financial support to advance the reality of education, through financial support for teachers to help them maintain their jobs, and support for the families of students whose children drop out of school to work, in addition to the maintenance and restoration of schools. Through a school sponsorship project.

According to Fahim, the campaign will provide support to needy students - especially orphans - to help them pay school fees and provide stationery, in addition to training, qualifying and developing teachers and providing the latest educational means.

Part of the conference launching the "My School in Jerusalem" campaign through the "We are all Mary" global forum in Istanbul (Al Jazeera)

outside Palestine

Outside the city of Jerusalem, the campaign will be active in different countries to inform students and teachers in schools about the problem of education in the city, by presenting illustrated clips, and other testimonies of parents, students and teachers who face difficulties in Jerusalem.

The campaign will also send messages to United Nations organizations urging them to protect Jerusalemite students who cross the Israeli checkpoints towards their schools.

On social media platforms, the forum launched a global electronic campaign to shed light on the problem of education in Jerusalem by publishing designs, illustrated and written content, and activating Twitter on the hashtags "#My_school_in_Jerusalem" and "#Save_Education_in_Jerusalem".

Some schools in Jerusalem were subject to the authority of the Ministry of Education in the Israeli municipality and the Israeli curriculum was imposed on them (Getty Images)

Support sources and access

Gulnar Fahim confirms that the financial support allocated to the “My School in Jerusalem” campaign will be collected from institutions working in the field of education around the world, relying heavily on the donations of individuals who love Jerusalem in the Arab and Islamic worlds. To the schools that deserve it, and that adopt the Palestinian curriculum.

Regarding how the support reached the city of Jerusalem, Fahim did not hide the great obstacles facing the implementation of projects in the city due to the occupation, but she confirmed that the support will find its way through the institutions operating in it related to large institutions abroad, especially the Turkish ones, which will facilitate the task and overcome the obstacles.

The Orphanage School of the Palestinian Endowments Department (Al-Jazeera)

The reality of education in Jerusalem

Since its occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967, Israel has sought to control the education sector in the city as it is an important factor in creating awareness and shaping the identity of Al-Maqdisi. Some schools in Jerusalem have been subjected to the authority of the Ministry of Education in the occupation municipality in the city, and the Israeli curriculum has been imposed on them, and the occupation is working to this day to generalize its curriculum. In all schools in several ways.

The number of students in East Jerusalem today is about 90,000 students, distributed among about 300 schools divided according to their affiliation into schools affiliated with the Islamic Waqf Department, schools by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), schools of the Israeli Ministry of Education, and semi-maarif schools (partially affiliated with the Ministry of Education). and private private schools.

Schools affiliated in whole or in part to the Ministry of Education adhere to the Israeli curriculum, and enjoy broad financial support in terms of infrastructure and administrative and financial facilities, and their staff enjoy high salaries, and their students pay symbolic installments.

As for other schools that teach the Palestinian curriculum, they are subjected to continuous Israeli blackmail and restrictions to adopt its curriculum.

In addition to the closure of the Palestinian Education Office in Jerusalem in 2019 and the issuance of a decision in the same year threatening to close UNRWA schools, these schools suffer from financial hardship, lack of classrooms and deterioration in buildings and infrastructure, and the salaries of their staff are low compared to the minimum wage in Jerusalem, while imposed Students in private schools have to pay high premiums, averaging $2,500 annually.

Old City schools... 12 Jewish schools under the practices of the occupation

- We are all Maryam (@weareallmaryam1) March 2, 2022

Threatening old town schools

The Union of Parents of Students in Jerusalem Schools issued a statement last February calling on the Palestinian official authorities to move to save the Old City schools inside the city wall due to the low number of students and the fear of closing them.

The statement said that those schools - which teach the Palestinian curriculum - are subjected to harassment by the occupation, represented by storming the school and arresting students, as happened in the Dar Al-Aytam Islamic School, and intercepting and searching some of them while heading to work, and preventing the entry of textbooks, as happened in the legitimate schools of Riyadh Al-Aqsa. And an attempt to seize some archaeological buildings with a strategic location, and the success of converting some of them into schools affiliated with the Israeli Ministry of Education.