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Lebanon on Arab world’s bottom list in education

30-12-2019

Lebanon ranked bottom in the list of Arab countries participating in the Program for International Student Assessment, PISA, 2018 and 74 out of 77 participating countries. The released results of performance of Lebanese students were lower compared to respondent states, especially in mathematics, sciences and reading abilities, with only a small percentage reaching advanced skills in at least one field. The above assessment, Al Akhbar wrote, is repeated every three years to evaluate the level of scholastic performance and acquisition of some of the basic capacities for active participating of students, notably, in the reading, science and math skills, in addition to life skills. Lebanon took part in the last round of the PISA evaluation tests with 5614 students chosen from 320 schools which comprise roughly 53726 pupils (87% of 15-year-old pupils). Noting, that while most countries took the tests in digital or virtual format, Lebanese students participated on paper skipping the comprehensive and life skills part. (More on the following link: https://bit.ly/2tLcLHf). In a related development, the former head of the Center for Educational Research and Development (CERD), Nimr Freiha, stressed that the conventional curriculum is an additional reason to improve the reality of education in the country, pointing to some 15 classroom subjects which is beyond the assimilative capacity of students. Freiha, who was speaking at the conference on formal basic education held on December 14, described as outdated the current educational approaches which date back to more than a 100 years. They are useless to students, Freiha explained, because they do not focus on educating the child but on the acquisition of info, advising for the adoption of another approach with fewer classroom subjects. (Al Akhbar, An Nahar, Al Diyar, December 14, 2019)

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