Integration, convenience, availability and academic standards, all play important roles
5 September 2023 Dr Jonathan Boyd
In this report:
As a new school year begins, this factsheet looks into Jewish education in the UK and the rest of Europe, highlighting parents’ different motives when choosing a Jewish or non-Jewish school for their children. The paper draws data from three sources: previous JPR research on school registration numbers, a 2018 pan-European study sponsored by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), conducted by a joint JPR-Ipsos team, and JPR’s spring 2023 survey of Jews in the UK.
Some of the key findings in this factsheet:
- The number of Jewish children attending Jewish schools has increased significantly over time and is expected to reach about 40,000 by the mid-2020s;
- In the UK, the number of children attending Haredi schools outnumbers the number of Jewish children in mainstream Jewish schools by about three to two.
- Parents in the UK, France and across Europe are most likely to point to a desire for their child to develop a strong Jewish identity as a motive for registering their children to a Jewish school;
- Jewish identity is followed in most places by a desire for their children to have friends with similar values, with the exception of France, where concern about antisemitism in non-Jewish schools is a more common motive;
- In the UK and France, the most common motive for parents to send their children to a non-Jewish school is actively preferring a non-Jewish (integrated) environment, cited by about two-thirds of all such parents in both countries;
- Convenience also commonly features as a reason not to send children to a Jewish school, coming second on the list in the UK and France, and topping it elsewhere in Europe.
- Academic standards and availability are also marked highly as reasons parents prefer a non-Jewish school for their children, particularly in the UK.
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Dr Jonathan Boyd
Dr Jonathan Boyd
Jonathan has been Executive Director of JPR since 2010, having previously held research and policy positions at the JDC International Centre for Community Development in...Read more