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Showing posts from November, 2012

The language of dissent

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Language matters to Lea Rosenberg.
The former English teacher and high school principal who is now Deputy Director General of International Relations and UNESCO at Israel’s Ministry of Education recently made an impassioned appeal to fellow education policy makers that they, essentially, watch their language when talking about education. Using the terminology of other disciplines to discuss education policy, Rosenberg argues, does a disservice to education. Rosenberg was speaking at a high-level meeting of representatives of education ministries held at the OECD’s Paris headquarters in mid-October.
Marilyn Achiron, Editor at the OECD’s Directorate for Education, spoke with her after the meeting.

Lea Rosenberg: Throughout the years, when different paradigms from different worlds were introduced into the world of education, people were fascinated by the opportunities that these paradigms gave to education. They enabled larger and deeper views into what education is all about. At the sam…

Skills on Show

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by Joanne Caddy
Senior Analyst, Skills Beyond Schools Division, Directorate for Education
Upon entering the vast hall, I was first struck by the quiet concentration etched on the contestants’ faces amidst the hustle and bustle. Here gathered Britain’s best young professionals – each one determined to prove their skill as tile-layers, electricians, plumbers, make-up artists, web designers, IT technicians, mobile robotics designers and landscape gardeners. Each one going for gold at the UK Skills Show, held annually as part of WorldSkills International  to celebrate skilled young people and recognise the ‘skills stars’ of today and tomorrow.

Earlier that day, in a far smaller room, another group of people had been equally intent in exploring the other side of the skills equation.

In his opening address to the UKCES-OECD international workshop on “Employer Ownership: Strengthening Partnerships to Enhance Skills Investment”, the UK Minister for Skills, Matthew Hancock MP underscored the ur…

Breaking down the barriers to immigrant students’ success at school

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by Marilyn Achiron
Editor, Directorate for Education

Education is one of the best ways of integrating immigrant children and their families into their new home countries. But most immigrant students have to overcome multiple barriers in order to succeed at school. The latest edition of PISA in Focus shows that of all the obstacles to success these students must surmount, the concentration of socio-economic disadvantage at school is among the most strongly related to poor performance.

Disadvantage and immigrant status are closely linked. Most immigrants leave their home countries in search of better economic prospects. Once immigrants arrive in a host country, they often settle in communities where there are other immigrants who share their culture, their language and often their socio-economic status. Their children often attend the same schools – and those schools frequently have large proportions of immigrant students. As a result, immigrant students tend to be concentrated in certai…

Private vs. public expenditure

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by Dirk Van Damme
Division Head, Innovation and Measuring Progress (IMEP) and Head of Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI)

Tertiary education institutions such as colleges and universities raise an increasing share of their funding from private sources. As the latest issue of the OECD’s Education Indicators in Focus details, the major part comes from households via tuition fees and other forms of household expenditure, but institutions also raise more contributions from private companies. Private expenditure now accounts for 30% of expenditure in tertiary education. As the latest issue of the OECD brief series Education Indicators in Focus details, the increase in private expenditure between 2000 and 2009 in OECD countries is remarkable. On average across OECD countries it more than doubled, but countries like Austria, Portugal and the Slovak Republic had growth indexes exceeding 500 points. In 2000, the United Kingdom already drew 32.3% of its expenditure on tertiary …