Yeshivot and Ulpanot Bnei Akiva is the leading religious Zionist educational network in Israel.
YBA’S history begins with Rav Avraham Yitzchak HaCohen Kook, Israel’s first Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi. In 1939, Rav Kook sent his student and future Israel Prize winner Rabbi Moshe Zvi Neria, along with students from the Bnei Akiva movement to a hilltop near Netanya to start a new kind of yeshiva high school.
Our schools are guided by the philosophy of Rav Kook, one of the leading figures in modern religious Zionism. Rav Kook called for the love of the entire Jewish People, devotion to the Land of Israel, and adherence to Torah.
YBA alumni are making a lasting impact on Israel and remaining true to their Torah heritage. Over 100,000 of our graduates can be found as leaders in every economic, academic, and professional sector of Israeli society. These graduates include leading artists, scientists, entrepreneurs, IDF generals, mayors, Supreme Court justices, Members of Knesset including current leaders such as Naftali Bennett, Tzipi Hotovely, and the directors of the Mossad and the Police.
YBA’s curricula are designed to stimulate intellectual curiosity in fields such as science and technology, and our schools are regularly cited at the national level for academic excellence. Our graduates have a rate of college acceptance well above the national average.
YBA impressive educational results are accomplished with the network’s high percentage of students from low income families. All our schools maintain an open enrollment policy – no child is turned away due to the parents’ inability to meet tuition costs. Every year half of all YBA students receive full or partial scholarship assistance.
Our dormitories have served as Youth Aliyah villages for thousands of new immigrant children from North Africa, Asia, the Former Soviet Union, and most recently, Ethiopia. Our schools have been pioneers in achieving successful social integration with students from diverse ethnic and economic backgrounds.
YBA students undertake extensive, weekly volunteer projects in their local communities all around the country affecting the lives of thousands of Israelis.
YBA proudly educates men and women throughout Israel and from all backgrounds. YBA has established non-residential schools in Israel’s periphery to provide quality religious Zionist education throughout the country, while also maintaining its base of residential schools.
Nearly all YBA graduates go on to proudly serve Israel, many joining YBA’s hesder yeshivot or volunteering for elite units and officer training in the IDF. YBA’s nine hesder yeshivot combine Torah learning with military service in a five-year program. Many of YBA’s ulpana graduates also go on to serve their country by volunteering for Sherut Leumi, the National Service Corps.
YBA’s kollel programs train tomorrow’s rabbis and teachers by offering Hesder students the opportunity to continue studying after completion of their IDF service toward rabbinic ordination by the Chief Rabbinate of Israel. In addition, YBA’s Orot Israel College offers higher education for men and women.