The Knesset Plenum changed the National Culture Basket Bill 2013, submitted by MK Nitzan Horowitz (Meretz) and other MKs into a point of order, with the consent of MK Horowitz.
The bill was meant to grant every student enrolled in an accredited educational establishment to participate in six cultural events per year throughout all his or her years in school from an array of cultural events in the National Culture Basket. The Minister of Culture will elect a committee for the Culture Basket with members involved in different cultural fields, that will be tasked with advising on the implementation of the law, electing sub-committees for the different cultural fields and permitting the events included in the basket.
The explanation for the bill stated that, “Education for culture and the arts is one of the most basic elements in the education and the building of future citizens’ identities. Despite this, in the past few years there has been erosion in the educational system’s investment in this area.
“The government-elected authority to ensure student visits to cultural events is the National Culture Basket, which is active in the Community Center Company and is funded by the Ministry of Education. However, the community centers only take partial care of this matter, and do not provide for all students throughout the country.
“In addition to the Culture Basket, the Ministry of Education subsidizes student visits to museums; however there have been budget cuts in this area as well.
“This process leaves the future of Israeli culture’s great achievements in danger.
“Therefore we must come up with legal arrangements that will strengthen cultural education and will broaden the exposure of students in the public and public-religious school systems to the arts.”
52 MKs approved changing the bill into a point of order and one opposed. The discussion will be moved to the Education, Culture and Sports Committee.