Our sixteen-year-olds were unlucky. In this I agree with Brandão Rodrigues, in his commentary on the results of PISA 2018, which has just assessed its ability to apply knowledge in key areas. According to the minister's thesis, bad luck was due to their being born in the wrong time, catching Nuno Crato's "troika", crisis, disinvestment and, of course, the educational policies of the previous three years. The shame and disrespect that this interpretation means is incredible.
These kids are not fifteen again, but perhaps Antonio Costa can look at the results and save those who are still eleven today. To do so, perhaps you should start by halting the current minister's experimentalistic ravings. Especially since we will no longer have any other useful indicators to point the way. The series of scoring test results have become useless because they are incomparable.
Yes. They were unlucky. They lived from crisis to crisis, reform to reform, contestation to contestation. But their worst misfortune was that after Crato they caught up with a minister who gives this example of taking responsibility and again suffers from the enlightened syndrome. It aims to rewrite history, change curricula, destroy the vague tools of quality measurement. A minister who, like his predecessor, wanted to reverse, change, leave his mark in the name of an allegedly successful ideology. As if success could be decreed from the 5th of October and did not have to be accompanied by a pedagogy of work, rigor, persistence, effort and resilience.
All things essential for survival in an ultra-competitive world. In this, the worst exclusion will be that of knowledge because it will be about him that will build everything else. What is serious is the photograph drawn by PISA 2018. This is where we should all start discussing.
The next times will be of “excellence” and among the young Portuguese students, 43.6 per cent, that is, almost half, in terms of text interpretation, is the two lowest levels in the scale, ie “No can identify the main idea of a moderately long text (level 2) and / or “understand the literal meaning of sentences and short passages, the main theme or the author's intent…” (level 1).
It's hard to think that one-fifth of our students have found it difficult to read and that only 7.5 percent reach the upper two levels of interpretation in a long reading. This means that things as basic as understanding machine instruction manuals, how to take medications or not, how to move around in the city, access to culture are practically forbidden to most of our young people. we are talking about working age workers but the generation of digital natives).
Taken from the last two assessment cycles, the results are truly disappointing: between 2012 and 2015, reading and interpretation skills had increased by ten points, well above average, and now fell by 6, leaving the positive balance of the last six years by 4 points. In Sciences, the rise with Crato had been 11 points and the fall of Brandão was 9, total disaster. In Mathematics, the previous PISA rise was 5 and the last one kept the price, six stagnant years.
Our digital natives are not ready for the 21st century. Neither the family nor the school has prepared them, and now it is probably no time to shiver. The study tells us that for the same degree of success in math and science, 48 percent of boys have already chosen engineering and only 15 percent of girls have chosen the same. Long live the consecration of gender stereotypes.
In the underprivileged, 93 per cent of students see themselves only as doctors, but only half of disadvantaged young people think they might get there. At the outset, it is 43 points of "ambitious" difference that makes us win the "bone" of social discrepancy among Europeans.
In Germany, the difference is 45 points, but it comes from a totally different composition: a quarter of the favored think they may not be able to go to the University and practically a third of the favored don't dream about it either and see other ways out.
Here, in terms of ambition, success and excellence, the richest were always and above all saved. Portugal emerges among the countries with the greatest social and cultural economic disparity and one of those with the greatest parental education and economic starting conditions in the social success of subsequent generations.
In Portugal, a student who is in the bottom 25 per cent is more likely to be in the top two levels of reading comprehension three times higher than that of a student in the bottom 25 per cent. upper / middle class)
The social elevator is stopped. But the myth of private education “for rich boys” and public for the disadvantaged also dies here. Is there social segregation? There is. In both we find very rich and very poor students. Although there is greater homogeneity in private schools, it is far from what is imputed to it. A total selection of students implied a level 1 (we got 0.4), there is no teaching for the elite. It is good to take this into account in indirect funding policies such as free textbooks.
If the defiance of Brandão Rodrigues is Nuno Crato's fault, the merit of Maria de Lurdes Rodrigues must be imputed to his predecessors. The absurdity of this thesis leads us to the following conclusion: after four years of socialist government, in which results in Portuguese rose 17 points, in Sciences 20 and Mathematics 21, the picture results from the work of the opposition and the three previous ministers. which succeeded at a breakneck pace between the end of 2002 and 2006. They offered a policy of stability, consistency, continuity and investment that underpinned the success achieved in 2009.
Does anyone buy this thesis? No one, Minister, not even the right or the PSD. Don't take us for fools.
For the past six years, the first three have been forward and the last three reversed. In short, there we continue to set the pace. We can set the number that defines us in all 492 domains. For comfort, we are averaging.
Averages are averages, but not to be depressed at all, Italy, Spain (481), Hungary, the United States, and Greece (451) are below. By contrast the Netherlands (519), Denmark, Belgium, Finland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, Ireland, the Czech Republic and France (495) are all above and needless to say that China tops the top of the list by 591 points with Macau punctuating 558. It is worth wondering who will be the new masters of the world where Europe is "on the brink of injury", with the honorable exception Estonia (523), in successive rounds of tests against the consolidated leadership of Asia ( China, Singapore, Japan and Korea).
There are always ways to see half-full cups and half-empty cups. But after spilling the contents, it is often difficult to refill the glass. Brandão Rodrigues is clearly spilling the glass. Nobody sees?