In a Finance Committee meeting held on Monday, committee member MK Meir Yitzchak Halevy (New Hope) commented on his upcoming appointment as deputy education minister: “I was already given the offer to serve as deputy education minister about six months ago, but I thought it would be good to learn the parliamentary work a bit and to help pass the budget first. Between the two alternatives I preferred to be here, and I have seen the wonderful work that people do here. As far as I’m concerned, to reach the Education Ministry, where I started 47 years ago, is coming full circle. I intend to promote value-based, social education, and to do things for all the different sectors. I hope that in a year’s time we will say that the appointment — in spite of all the cynicism and sarcasm — was a good appointment.
“In my opinion,” he added, “the Education Ministry needs two deputy ministers. I thank you for your congratulations.”
Finance Committee Chair MK Alex Kushnir (Yisrael Beytenu) said: “Your appointment is a powerful addition to the system and the Education Ministry. I would like to wish you success and encouragement. I am certain that the education system and the schoolchildren will greatly benefit from your work.”
MK Rabbi Yinon Azoulay (Shas) said: “I hope you will make the post — which I view as unnecessary — a necessary one.”
MK Rabbi Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism) said: “I wish you success. This is a completely unnecessary move; if they need another person in the ministry, why did they fire the director-general?”
MK Ofir Katz (Likud siad): “Meir, you’re a hardworking committee member, who works to promote and improve things. I remember when they passed the Norwegian Law it was explained to us how important it is to have hands in the committees and people to do the work, but here they are doing the opposite, they’re taking a person who works and promotes things to this post.”
The Cabinet voted on Sunday to approve the appointment of MK Halevy as deputy education minister.
Halevy will be the sixth deputy minister in this government, joining Idan Roll (Yesh Atid), Yoav Segalovitz (Yesh Atid), Yair Golan (Meretz), Abir Kara (Yamina) and Alon Schuster (Blue and White).
There are 28 ministers in the government. Of the 34 ministers and deputies, 21 have quit the Knesset via the Norwegian Law. Diaspora Affairs Minister Nachman Shai quit the Labor list before he would have entered the Knesset.