Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Education Minister Yoav Kish on Tuesday visited the “Bridges” program class of IDF Intelligence Branch Unit 8200 and the IDF Personnel Branch Education Corps at the ORT Air and Space Technology High School in Maale Adumim.
The goal of the program is to expose pupils to the world of computers and cyber and give them the tools to integrate into the high-tech industry, military service or anywhere else they choose.
The program commander, IDF Lt.-Col. Alon Hachima, emphasized that the program is open to all children, without selections or threshold conditions.
The prime minister and education minister also heard from the school principal about how the program has affected the pupils who have participated in it.
Netanyahu told the students, “You have entered the world of tomorrow and have broken through this barrier. This is wonderful. We very much want to commend the education system in Ma’ale Adumim, and in other communities, for introducing these materials into the curriculum.
“This is the world of the future and it is already here, and the fact that you have overcome the obstacles, impediments and fears, you dove into the pool and suddenly you are discovering that you can swim just like others and maybe even better than them. This is exactly what we wanted to happen,” he said.
“I would also like to thank the instructors and managers, and Unit 8200 and the IDF Education Branch,” he added.
Netanyahu said there was a need to have the program become national in scope in order to reach all children in Israel.
“We want every child in Israel to have the equal opportunity to use these tools. We want to increase this in Hebrew, Arabic and even ultra-Orthodox content, that will help every boy and girl. We want everyone to be able to grasp the future today,” he said.
At the conclusion of the visit, Netanyahu awarded certificates of excellence to the program’s outstanding pupils.