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Tracking and Ethnicity in Israeli Secondary Education

Yossi Shavit
American Sociological Review
Vol. 49, No. 2 (Apr., 1984), pp. 210-220
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2095571
Page Count: 11
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Tracking and Ethnicity in Israeli Secondary Education
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Abstract

Secondary education in Israel uses curricular tracking. The academic track is selective on the basis of scholastic aptitude and prepares students for higher education. The vocational tracks maintain low curricular requirements and are said to enhance educational attainment of low-aptitude students. Ethnicity is highly correlated with measured aptitude. Hence, Sephardim are typically assigned to vocational tracks whereas Ashkenazim are more likely to attend the academic track. The investigation concerns the extent to which tracking reinforces the effects of ethnic aptitude differences on ethnic inequalities in educational attainment. An analysis of data on educational histories for a subsample of Jewish men reveals that educational persistence at the secondary level is virtually unaffected by track placement. Academic track placement enhances eligibility for higher education of all but the least able students. The availability of the vocational track does not enhance educational participation of Sephardim. Rather, it inhibits further their already low likelihood of receiving higher education.

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