World

Thousands protest slashing of public funding for Christian schools in Israel

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, May 26, 2015 file photo, An Arab Israeli Christian school girl looks at a board with drawings at the Terra Santa School in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Ramle, Israel. About 2,500 striking demonstrators gathered Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015, outside the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, police said, to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools. Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system _ a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty, File)

    FILE - In this Tuesday, May 26, 2015 file photo, An Arab Israeli Christian school girl looks at a board with drawings at the Terra Santa School in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Ramle, Israel. About 2,500 striking demonstrators gathered Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015, outside the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, police said, to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools. Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system _ a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, May 26, 2015 file photo, Arab Israeli Christian school children play soccer at the Terra Santa School in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Ramle, Israel. About 2,500 striking demonstrators gathered Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015, outside the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, police said, to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools. Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system _ a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty, File)

    FILE - In this Tuesday, May 26, 2015 file photo, Arab Israeli Christian school children play soccer at the Terra Santa School in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Ramle, Israel. About 2,500 striking demonstrators gathered Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015, outside the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, police said, to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools. Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system _ a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, May 26, 2015 file photo, Arab Israeli Christian school children play at the Terra Santa School in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Ramle, Israel. About 2,500 striking demonstrators gathered Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015, outside the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, police said, to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools. Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system _ a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty, File)

    FILE - In this Tuesday, May 26, 2015 file photo, Arab Israeli Christian school children play at the Terra Santa School in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Ramle, Israel. About 2,500 striking demonstrators gathered Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015, outside the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, police said, to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools. Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system _ a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty, File)  (The Associated Press)

Police say about 2,500 striking demonstrators have gathered outside the prime minister's residence in Jerusalem to protest against the slashing of funds for Christian schools.

Christian school administrators accuse Israel of cutting their funding as a tactic to pressure them to join the Israeli public school system — a move they say would interfere with the schools' Christian values and high academic achievements.

Some 33,000 students in 47 schools have been on strike since the school year began on Sept. 1. Arab lawmakers joined students, parents and principals at Sunday's demonstration.

Protesters complain of discrimination since Israel continues to fully fund large private school networks that cater to ultra-Orthodox Jews while it slashes the Christians' budget.

Ragheed Massad, a student from Nazareth, said "there is no equality for our schools."