80 percent of country’s children do not know what they should know in school
The Philippines participated in the Program for International Student Assessment (Pisa), the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), and the first cycle of the Southeast Asia Primary Learning Metrics (SEA-PLM).
Across the three assessments, poor learning results were noticed among students in the Philippines. Around 80 percent of them falling below minimum levels of proficiency expected for the respective grades.
In Pisa, Philippines was last in reading and second to last in science and mathematics among 79 countries.
In TIMSS, the country ranked last in both mathematics and science among 58 countries in the fourth-grade assessment.
In SEA-PLM, it was among the bottom half of the six countries in reading, mathematics, and writing literacy.
“There is a crisis in education—which started pre-COVID-19, but will have been made worse by COVID-19, as more than 80 percent of children do not know what they should know in school,” the World Bank said.
“Overall poor performance across grades and subjects are deeply rooted in students’ limited proficiency in the language of instruction,” the World Bank pointed out.
The World Bank also noted students’ poor health and nutrition conditions that could have likely hampered their readiness and ability to learn.
“One in three children under the age of 5 is stunted, which is a principal marker of malnutrition,” it said.
The World Bank described childhood stunting due to undernutrition as a “silent pandemic” in the Philippines.