PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

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JIM CURRAN
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PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by JIM CURRAN » Sat Dec 04, 2010 10:16 pm

British schools 'failing to keep pace with world's best'
Labour’s education record will come under renewed attack next week as a major international study shows schools are failing to improve.

A league table ranking education standards across the developed world is expected to confirm that teenagers in Britain are still lagging behind those in other countries.

The figures – charting achievement in literacy, mathematics and science – are set to show that schools in England, Scotland and Wales are performing poorly in the core subjects.

It follows disastrous results when rankings compiled by the respected Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development were last published in 2007.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/ed ... -best.html

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Susan Godsland
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Re: Falling further behind

Post by Susan Godsland » Sun Dec 05, 2010 11:40 am

From Jim's link above:
Despite a multi-billion pound rise in education spending under the last Government, figures showed Britain plummeted from seventh to 17th in reading

chew8
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Re: Falling further behind

Post by chew8 » Sun Dec 05, 2010 1:13 pm

I'm not sure if I have correctly understood the chronology.

Is this latest news about the results of tests administered to 15-year-olds in 2009, the previous round of testing having been done in 2006 with results published in 2007? Children who were 15 in 2006 would have started school before Labour came to power in 1997 - children who were 15 in 2009 would probably have had the National Literacy Strategy throughout their primary schooling.

Have I got that right?

Jenny C.

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Susan Godsland
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Re: Falling further behind

Post by Susan Godsland » Sun Dec 05, 2010 1:36 pm

These are the test results for 2009, Jenny, so yes, these children 'would probably have had the National Literacy Strategy throughout their primary schooling'.
For the first time, this edition of PISA will show how student performance in each country has evolved over time by comparing the reading, mathematics and science results with previous PISA surveys from 2000, 2003 and 2006.
http://www.oecd.org/document/37/0,3343, ... _1,00.html

chew8
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Re: Falling further behind

Post by chew8 » Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:55 pm

Unfortunately, journalists and others (including politicians) often don't take the time-lag factor into account - i.e. the fact that children's reading and writing performance at 15 and 16 is largely the result of teaching they have received some years earlier.

I myself happen to think that in literacy (I can't speak for numeracy) it is the teaching which children receive at infant level which has the biggest long-term impact. Although I'm absolutely in favour of good remedial teaching for strugglers in Key Stage 2 and beyond, I think that this is quite a bit less effective, on balance, than really good first-time teaching. If this is the case, then the performance of 15-year-olds needs to be considered mainly in the light of the teaching they received 8-10 years earlier, and, as I say, journalists and others don't always realise this.

Jenny C.

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Re: Falling further behind

Post by Susan Godsland » Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:04 pm

VIEWING THE UNITED KINGDOM SCHOOL SYSTEM THROUGH THE PRISM OF PISA

This note summarises the results for the United Kingdom in the PISA 2009 assessment. Since the focus of the PISA 2009 assessment was on reading, results on reading are examined in greater detail than results in mathematics and science.

http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/33/8/46624007.pdf

Secondary school pupils in the UK are falling behind their international counterparts, according to a major survey from the OECD.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-11929277
The results for the UK's teenagers have not declined significantly across these years, says the OECD - it is more the case that they have failed to keep up with the improvements of pupils in other countries.

"The UK's performance is about average," says the OECD's Michael Davidson. "The question is whether the UK thinks that 'average' is good enough?"

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by Goodenough » Tue Dec 07, 2010 8:25 pm

I've just been looking up the scores for Ireland. They seem similar enough to those of the UK but depressingly worse than the Irish scores in 2000. Ireland showed the largest decline in reading scores from 2000 to 2009 of all the countries surveyed.

http://m.irishtimes.com/newspaper/break ... via=latest
Ireland has slipped down the OECD education rankings in literacy and maths, in a move which could damage the strong international standing of the Irish educational system.

On reading levels, Ireland has slipped from 5th place in 2000 to 17th place, the sharpest decline among 39 countries surveyed.
Eileen

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Debbie Hepplewhite
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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by Debbie Hepplewhite » Tue Dec 07, 2010 9:39 pm

Does this reflect the dominance of Reading Recovery and a more multi-cueing approach do you think?

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by yvonne meyer » Tue Dec 07, 2010 10:20 pm

There are lots of things about the PISA test that make me uncomfortable, for example, it is not a test of reading but of 'literacy comprehension'. Also, I don't believe that it is an accurate enough measure to be able to compare performance between countries. However, there are still gems of information that can be found for those prepared to trawl through the mountains of information. Follwoing is the link to the Executive Summary and a link to a piece from an Australian journalist who is probably our best reporter on Education in Australia.

For anyone still confused, PISA 2009 tested 15 year olds who would have started school aged 5 years in 1999.

PISA 2009 Executive Summary

http://www.oecd.org/document/61/0,3343, ... ve_summary
Australian students fall behind rest of the world Justine Ferrari, Education writer From: The Australian December 08, 2010

AUSTRALIAN teenagers are falling behind the rest of the world in school because of a drop in academic performance by the nation's top students.
Australia is one of only five countries, and the only high-performing nation, to record a drop in student scores over the past nine years.

OECD testing of 15-year-olds last year show Australian students dropped an average 13 points in reading, equivalent to four months of school. The results confirm a trend that Australia's top students are failing to keep pace with those overseas, with 13 per cent scoring in the top levels compared with 18 per cent in 2000.

Efforts to improve the skills of students at the bottom failed to have any effect, with little change among the lowest scores.

The Program for International Student Assessment, which began in 2000, tested about 470,000 students in 65 countries last year, including 14,000 Australian students in 353 schools.

While Australia's score in reading was still among the top 10 nations, Australian students scored about 33 points behind the top-ranking students in Shanghai, China, which is equivalent to about one year of school.

Shanghai, participating for the first time, outscored the previous world leader, Finland, in all tests, as did Korea. The top five also include Hong Kong and Singapore, participating for the first time.

Australia's average score in maths has also declined significantly over the past six years, falling by 10 points, while the proportion of students in the top two levels fell to 16 per cent from 20 per cent in 2003.

The lower scores put Australia outside the top 10 in maths, ranking alongside New Zealand, Belgium, Germany and Estonia and behind the top five nations as well as Taipei, Finland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Canada, The Netherlands and Macao.

For the first time, PISA results were reported against the type of school students attended, showing that students in independent schools scored significantly higher than Catholic students, who in turn outperformed government school students.

Students from higher socioeconomic backgrounds, who are more concentrated in independent schools, are as much as three years ahead of the poorest students in government schools.

But the report says that when differences in the education and affluence levels of parents were taken into account, there was no difference in student scores.

PISA is conducted in Australia by the Australian Council for Educational Research, and chief executive Geoff Masters said the gaps between affluent and disadvantaged students, indigenous and non-indigenous, and city and remote students were of great concern. "Some Australian teenagers may be trying to enter the workforce and forge a future for themselves with reading, mathematics and science literacy skills equivalent to a Year 7 or 8 education or worse," he said.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/nationa ... 5967240227

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by g.carter » Tue Dec 07, 2010 11:14 pm

Debbie says:
Does this reflect the dominance of Reading Recovery and a more multi-cueing approach do you think?
It may be deeper than that. Look at the decimation of libraries, replacement of reading with computer games etc.etc. the fact that teachers teaching these children were educated themselves in a grammar-free zone, spelling isn't important zone, latin is un p-c zone, science reduced to 'ooh-ah' stuff (ds comment during first year of secondary school), modern languages reduced to learn-by-pics. Music, singing etc. no longer playing a big part in schools, history by multi-choice examination, topic work (completed by middle class parents), And look at thetarget setting, a year spent/wasted teaching SATs to the test, and so on....

oh dear, this is turning into a Daily Mail-type rant ...

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by yvonne meyer » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:53 am

Does this reflect the dominance of Reading Recovery and a more multi-cueing approach do you think?
I think it goes far deeper - teacher-directed vs child-centred and a 'road-map' curriculum vs fuzzy 'levels'.

Where I think the PISA information is most valuble is comparing students within a country, rather then comparing them from country to country. Here in Australia, despite increased overall spending on Education, our least able students have flat-lined and our most able students have dropped down.

In Australia, students in high-fee private schools outperform all others but PISA does not provide information on how much tutoring these students receive from parents and tutors outside school hours. I make this point because our Education Union is already calling for more money for government schools based on this PISA report. In fact, all our schools provide much the same ineffective child-centred learning. The reason that high-fee private school studnets out-perform the others is partly because these schools buy the brightest students with scholarships and also because of the high level of after school tutoring these kids receive.

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by yvonne meyer » Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:46 am

This is the Pisa information that I find most interesting.

Reading

In the first column is the percentage of students below Level 2 and in the second column, the percentage of students at Level 5.

Korea 0% below level 2, and 7.2% at level 5
Russia 0.1% 0.0%
USA 0.3% 2.4%
NZ 0.6% 3.0%
Canada 0.7% 4.0%
Finland 1.2% 4.0%
Australia 1.8% 4.9%
Ireland 6.2% 7.3%

What jumps out for me is firstly that Korea is doing so much better then every other country because they have zero below the infamous level 2 and the second highest 7.2% at level 5.

The second thing that jumps out is that Ireland has both the best and worst - the highest percentage below level 2 and is the only country to beat Korea (just) with the percentage of students at level 5. :?: What do our Irish posters think is the reason for this huge range?

Finally, Russia is the most even (fairest?) with almost no-one below level 2 and no-one at level 5.

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by Susan Godsland » Wed Dec 08, 2010 10:40 am


JIM CURRAN
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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by JIM CURRAN » Wed Dec 08, 2010 9:06 pm

I agree with Yvonne and Geraldine that the problems in education run much deeper than Reading Recovery which itself is only a symptom of a much more intractable problem. I use the term Constructivism, in his essay ‘The Roots of the Education Wars’ E.D Hirsch uses the terms Romanticism and Progressivism. These terms all mean the same thing, child centered, play based , discovery learning. These theories have done more to maintain the education gap between disadvantaged children and there more advantaged peers than any other single issue.

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articl ... d0174.html

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Re: PISA results 2009- UK falling further behind

Post by Goodenough » Wed Dec 08, 2010 9:12 pm

Does this reflect the dominance of Reading Recovery and a more multi-cueing approach do you think?
This must be part of the problem I think although the problems obviously run much deeper. Ireland introduced a "Revised Primary School Curriculum" starting in the mid 1990s. English was among the first subjects to have the changes implemented. This would mean that present day 15 year olds would have had the revised curriculum in English throughout their primary school years. This is unfortunately a possible explanation for the decrease in Literacy scores. Far from introducing any version of synthetic phonics the curriculum moved in the opposite direction with emphasis on real books and a move from word level to sentence level instruction.
yvonne meyer wrote:
The second thing that jumps out is that Ireland has both the best and worst - the highest percentage below level 2 and is the only country to beat Korea (just) with the percentage of students at level 5. :?: What do our Irish posters think is the reason for this huge range?
I don't really have any explanation for this Yvonne.

One excuse for the high number of children below level 2 that is being suggested over here is the high number of children coming into Primary schools with very little English. The number of students coming into Irish schools with poor or non-existent English certainly grew hugely from the late 1990s from virtually none to some schools in Dublin having a majority of ESL students. This was a consequence of our Celtic Tiger economy of course. (Not a problem now!)
Language support teachers were provided as time went on but the system did get overwhelmed a bit in places due to the suddeness of the increase and the lack of experience with ESL in Irish Primary schools.

The years from 1998 to 2008 saw hugely increased spending on Education here with much greater provision of resource and learning support teachers. It doesn't seem to have been money well spent does it?
Eileen

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