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Israeli teachers’ strike ends

An unprecedented Israeli teachers’ strike ended.

Representatives of Israel’s secondary school teachers and of the Education Ministry and Treasury announced early Thursday that they had reached a deal allowing classes to resume.

According to media reports, the teachers secured a government commitment to increase wages by as much as 8.5 percent.

The agreement was clinched hours before back-to-work orders issued against the teachers by Israel’s National Labor Court were to have gone into effect. Many teachers had threatened to resign rather than be forced back into the classroom.

Though Israel’s civil service regularly sees work slowdowns during labor disputes, the 65-day school strike keeping tens of thousands of teenagers from classes was unprecedented.

Educational experts say irrevocable damage may have been done to 12th-graders’ preparations for final exams and may even affect next year’s military draft figures.

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