Study finds British Jewish school enrolment rises while population shrinks

(JTA) – The number of Jewish schools in Britain and their enrolments have dramatically increased even as the overall Jewish population in the country has decreased, a new study has found.

The study by the Institute for Jewish Policy Research found that while the British Jewish population has decreased from 410,000 to 300,000 since the 1950s, the number of Jewish schools and the number of Jewish students enrolled in those schools has risen significantly, by 400 and 500 per cent respectively.

While one in five Jewish children attended a Jewish school in the 1970s, that number rose to about two-thirds, totaling 30,900 students, in the 2014-2015 academic year, the study found.

Of those children, most are enrolled in haredi Orthodox schools (17,500) while the rest are enrolled in centrist Orthodox, pluralist or progressive institutions (13,400). The study found that all haredi Orthodox children attend Jewish schools while only 43 per cent of non-haredi children do.

Jewish schools comprise 0.5 per cent of all schools in England and 1.5 per cent of all religious schools.

The study was carried out on behalf of the Board of Deputies of British Jews.

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