Figure 5.1 shows the population distribution by three levels of education: up to 12 years of studies with matriculation; 13-15 years; and 16 or more. The findings clearly attest to a significant improvement in the level of education over time. Among Jews, only 17.7 percent had some post-secondary education in 1975, by 2000 it had increased to 41 percent, and the figure is as high as 53 percent today. In other words, every second adult Jew in Israel today has some post-high school education. If we look at those with 16 years of education or more, an academic degree, the increase was from 7 percent in 1975 to 28.9 percent today, a fourfold increase.
Figure 5.1 Level of Education among Jews and Non-Jews in Israel, 1975-2014
The non-Jewish population has also experienced an increase in post-secondary education: from 3.5 percent in 1975 to 21.1 percent in 2000, and to 25.3 percent today. The proportion of non-Jews with 16 years of education or more increased from 1 to 12 percent during this period.
Improvement in educational attainment was faster among Jews than non-Jews. This has resulted in widening gaps between the two groups. The index of dissimilarity, which pertains to the proportion of non-Jews who need to raise their level of education so that their educational profile resembles that of the Jewish population, increased from 11 percent in 1975 to 20 percent in 2000, and is 28 percent today.