Recently a new OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) report was released, focusing on low performing students and why they fall behind.
The report found that no country participating in OECD 2012 can claim that all of its 15 year old students have achieved a baseline level of proficiency in mathematics, reading and science. It argues that too many students are trapped in a ‘vicious cycle’ of poor performance and demotivation, which leads to further bad marks and disengagement from education. Further, poor proficiency in numeracy and literacy leads to poorer health, limited opportunities for well-paying jobs, and less social and political participation. This in turn affects the long term growth of a country’s economy.
The report makes recommendations on how to tackle low performance including providing additional resources, taking a multi-pronged approach tailored to national and local levels, providing schools with language and psycho-social support, offering more extracurricular activities, and training teachers to work with low-performing students.