Czech students are failing maths at the highest rate in ten years

Students under the age of 15 from a wide variety of schools, from elementary to multi-year gymnasiums and vocational schools, participated in the trials.

“Students achieve above-average results in mathematics literacy. Nine countries achieve statistically significantly better results than the Czech Republic and 12 comparable countries. The countries with the best results include East Asian countries and European countries such as Estonia and Switzerland,” explained senior school researcher Tomáš Zatloukal.

Epidemic is the cause

Results They have obviously been affected by the pandemic and school closures and distance education, which have affected all education systems. “Compared to 2018, all countries have worsened except for Japan, the Republic of Korea and Turkey, which achieved similar or comparable results to the last measurement three years ago,” he added.

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With an average score of 487 on the tests, the Czech Republic is now on a par with Belgium, Denmark, Great Britain, Poland, Austria, Australia, Slovenia, Finland, Latvia and Sweden. The average for countries was 472 points, for example Slovakia scored an average of 464 points.

Since 2003, the proportion of students not reaching level two of the six levels of math skills has also increased significantly. Precisely the second level, according to the PISA method, is the basis for functioning in the society of the 21st century, explained Zatloukal.

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Prize recipients are also dwindling. For example, in 2003, almost two-thirds of pupils in multi-year gymnasiums achieved the fifth and sixth levels, now they have two-fifths.

The biggest weakness of Czech education

However, it is particularly unfortunate to see students’ results in mathematics compared to their socio-economic status. The questionnaires also map several factors of family background, such as what is the highest level of education achieved by the student’s parents, what is the equipment, how many books do they have, or what is the highest professional level of the parents.

It turned out that almost half of the students from weak family backgrounds did not reach the second level of competence and only seven percent of them could achieve higher results.

“The Czech Republic has the highest correlation between the socio-economic background of students’ families and their results. We are one of four countries in the world where that correlation is strongest. Seven percent is the third lowest figure among all 81 countries that took part in the survey,” Jadlugel said.

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In science literacy, Czech students scored an average of 498 points, while the national average was 485 points. A similar result of the Czech Republic was achieved by Poland, USA, Great Britain, Latvia, Denmark and Sweden.

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