Compare Yourself With the Best, Not the Worst

Adpoting the PISA tests as a basic tool for the management of education systems is essential if you want to push back the boundaries of underdevelopment.

Friday, August 8, 2014

EDITORIAL

It is not uncommon to hear from officials in Latin American educational corporations that the PISA assessment system is "unfair" because it compares results with those obtained in advanced countries.

But this is not a matter of justice, but rather efficiency, and the search for better results. In order to improve it is essential to first take accurate measurements and then compare them with those of the people we will be competing with, in whatever field that may be.

The first virtue of PISA tests is that it exposes the satisfaction shown by some rulers when proclaiming the virtues of education in their countries, as simply an exercise in populist politics.

According to Angel Gurría in his opinion piece in Nacion.com, "... Before the PISA tests, many governments were able to say that their education systems were the most successful in the world and that if there were any flaws, they had already taken the necessary measures to resolve them. But the PISA evaluation exposes weaknesses in each country's systems, and therefore helps to ensure that the authorities recognize (and, if possible, resolve) the remaining deficiencies."

"... The PISA assessment remains the most useful tool there is for officials who want to improve education systems in their countries."



More on this topic

Distance to Reach Development is Not Reduced

December 2019

The latest PISA assessment confirms that Costa Rica, Panama and the Dominican Republic, the only countries in the region to appear in its ranking, are far from the average results obtained by the OECD group of nations.

Although in the last ten years the average expenditure per primary and secondary student increased by about 15% in OECD countries, most of their states do not report significant progress in education.

Too Much Trump and Too Little PISA

December 2016

Central Americans and other Latin Americans are feeling more concerned about what Trump can say or do, than over the only thing that can really change the fate of poverty in the region, which is education.

EDITORIAL

The recently published results of the PISA tests confirm that in the best case, these countries maintain positions midway down the table of global results, and in the worst case have fallen in the objective measurement of quality of the most important resource for economic and social development, people and their cognitive abilities.

Education in Campaing Speeches: Missing in Action

January 2014

More jobs and less poverty is the refrain of Central American politicians, while they say little or nothing about education, without which there are no jobs nor wealth generation.  

EDITORIAL

Even in Costa Rica, where its educational system during the past century allowed the country to reach higher development levels than its neighbors, education is not a priority issue in the election campaign which is in full swing, despite the fact that the Costa Rican public education system is visibly losing more and more students as parents are increasingly opting for private schools and colleges in order to try to secure a decent future for their children.

The Serious Problems in Education in Panama

February 2013

Companies need to invest time and money in order to cover the serious limitations of graduates from the public school system, which is an obstacle to development.

In Panama the educational problem has already been diagnosed. Martesfinanciero.com reports that the country has at least 14 diagnostic and prognostic documents on education, but "none have managed to be implemented completely to produce students with an optimal or acceptable level of knowledge which allows them to have the skills demanded from the labor market. "

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