MASTERY of math, science and reading proved to be lacklustre among 15-year old Slovak pupils who took the OECD tests, as part of the so-called PISA testing.

Among 34 OECD countries, Slovakia placed below average, scoring higher in math than only five other countries – Israel, Greece, Turkey, Chile and Mexico, the Sme daily reported. The results of the test indicate that still fewer Slovak teenagers master basic math knowledge and skills. While the share of such pupils was nearly 20 percent 10 years ago, now it is more than one-quarter (27.5 percent). In Slovakia 5,737 15-year old students took the tests.

Slovak pupils placed 23rd - 29th in math, 32nd in reading and 28th - 31st in science.

Education Minister Dušan Čaplovič said in response to the results that he expects the performance of Slovak pupils to decrease even more, and blamed among other things what he called the strong and early selection of pupils to various types of schools, mainly the eight-year grammar schools, the SITA newswire reported.

Due to this selection, as well as the social background of the pupils, there are big differences among the pupils from different schools and even within schools, he said.

Source: Sme, SITA

Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports
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