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Zalman Aran

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Zalman Aran

Zalman Aran
Date of birth 1 March 1899
Place of birth Yuzovka, Yekaterinoslav Governorate, Russian Empire
Year of aliyah 1926
Date of death 6 September 1970(1970-09-06) (aged 71)
Knessets 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Faction represented in Knesset
1949–1965 Mapai
1965–1968 Alignment
1968–1969 Labor Party
1969 Alignment
Ministerial roles
1954–1955 Minister without Portfolio
1955 Minister of Transportation
1955–1960 Minister of Education
1963–1969 Minister of Education

Zalman Aran (Hebrew: זלמן ארן‎, 1 March 1899 – 6 September 1970) was a Zionist activist, educator and Israeli politician.


Aran was born Zalman Aharonowitz in 1899 in Yuzovka in the

In 1926, he immigrated to Mandate Palestine, where he joined the Ahdut HaAvoda Party. He worked in building and road construction. In 1930, after Ahdut HaAvoda merged into Mapai, he was appointed the new party's General Secretary in Tel Aviv. From 1936 to 1947 he worked in the Histadrut Executive Committee as Treasurer and Director of the Information Department, and was one of the founders of the School for Histadrut Activists. He also became a member of the Zionist Executive Committee in 1946 and a member of its Presidium in 1948.

In 1949 he was elected to the Knesset, and was re-elected in 1951, 1955, 1959, 1961 and 1965. He chaired of Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, and was also a member of the House Committee. In 1953 he was appointed Minister without Portfolio and, in 1954, Minister of Transportation. From 1955 to 1960 and again from 1963 to 1969, he was Minister of Education and Culture.

As Israel's Minister of Education, he introduced "Jewish Identity" and Jewish tradition into the curriculum and promoted the expansion of technical education. In 1955, the Knesset accepted his reform program for the Israeli education system and his demands for a secondary education diploma,[1] as well as extension of Israel's compulsory education Law to the ages of 14 to 16.[2] He also promoted the integration of children from different backgrounds into the same schools to accelerate Israel's melting-pot ideal and cut down socio-economic gaps in the Israeli society,[3] including recreational activities for development town residents.[4]

As a government minister in 1967, he initially supported the majority position which sought a diplomatic solution to Egypt's closure of the Straits of Tiran, rather than a pre-emptive strike, which he also felt posed a great risk to the home front and the Israeli Air Force.[5] He also opposed the occupation of East Jerusalem.[6]

He died in 1970. The Tel Aviv University School of History and the central library of the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev were named after him, as were several schools in Israel.


  • Trials of Education and implementation (1971) (Hebrew)
  • Autobiography (1971) (Hebrew)
  • Front and the appearance (1972) (Hebrew)


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External links

  • Zalman Aran on the Knesset website
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