Following a raucous debate on Wednesday, Education Committee Chairman MK Amram Mitzna (Hatenua) called to reinstate the teacher from Kiryat Tivon who expressed leftist views in class. The teacher, Adam Verta, was suspended and called to a pre-dismissal hearing with the director of the ORT Greenberg School after one of his 12th-grade students wrote a letter to Education Minister Shai Piron. In the letter the student claimed that her teacher “makes sure to stress his political leftist view in every class” and that Verta accuses the Israeli army of acting with unusual brutality and violence, and has said that the occupation of the Palestinian territories is immoral.
Hadash MK Dov Khenin said that as far as he is concerned the discussion is not about the teacher and student, but about questions pertaining to the education system in general, such as “what is the status of the teacher in the classroom, in the school? Can one educate without discussing politics?” He called to reinstate the school teacher. “School is a part of democracy, and moral dilemmas should be discussed in school,” he said. Oded Segev, a student at ORT Greenberg, said Adam Verete is an “amazing teacher and person” who “never preached to us.” Segev said the student who complained against Verta “did so due to personal reasons and because he is a leftist – she even said so on the news. She said she would not have written the letter had he talked about the settlements. There is a difference between forcing students to agree and putting the things on the table as a real and honest person so that students can understand and look at the world not only through the eyes of the ORT network.”