PISA-tarios

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Some day, it will fall

In case you did not know, the government of Miranda recently applied the PISA educational quality test to students in its schools.

Longtime reader and commenter Kepler has just informed me that the results from the test are in. His post on the subject is well worth a look.

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1 COMMENT

  1. He Kepler,

    Congratulations on your efforts on this. The results are interesting, but I am curious to know if the distribution is “flatter” than that of the other countries that Miranda is being compared to. I know I am not using proper terminology in this question, but I am not an expert in statistical analysis and I have forgotten the correct language from the single semester of Statistics that I took in college.

    I am anticipating that we will see a somewhat flatter distribution of results reflecting a growing gap between the two divided segments of Venezuelan society and their respective values placed on education.

    • Roy,
      Juan Cristobal helped to put these people in contact.

      Now, to be honest, we need to be cautious. Miranda did its work, but it could have been better. As the OECD said:
      “Miranda-Venezuela did not meet the PISA standard on schools response rate. No data were available to undertake a non-response bias analysis. Caution should be exercised when using Miranda-Venezuela data and when interpreting the reported analyses.”
      I still am trying to find out what went wrong there.
      Still, that’s better than the national government.

      Because the current Venezuelan government is not interested in accountability, the test could only be carried out in Miranda’s public schools (i.e. those managed by Capriles’ team) or private ones. That left a third of pupils unaccounted for: those ruled by Chávez’s government. You can guess what you would get from there.

      The anecdotal evidence I have got from different sources, not only in Miranda but in Carabobo, is that national public schools tend to have a lower level than region public schools (not to mention private schools).

      And yet, even this study showed particularly high variance in performance in Venezuela depending on socio economic and cultural background and also on school governance.

      • Oh, I didn’t do much on this, the merit is all Kepler’s, Miranda’s, and PISA’s.

        BTW, the Governor’s Education Secretary, Juan Maragall, was a champion for this thing (I think, right Kep?).

        • Yes, Maragall did a good work. Capriles as well. Capriles was personally involved in this. The Chavez government tried to block this in many ways, like trying to prevent the use of dollars to pay for the fees. Chavez officials are very aware of the PISA test and fear it like hell.

      • OK, I am getting new reports…it seems the main problem with transparency was…surprise, surprise…the fact they could not get the necessary information from the federal (Chávez-ruled) schools.

    • Roy, there is one thing this test doesn’t show yet: the difference between Miranda or Carabobo and Guárico or Barinas or Apure is bound to be larger than that between any two US states. The causes are much older than Chávez himself.

      This map
      http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-FpWqgHCBlxM/TtqA_T2Lm7I/AAAAAAAAB7Y/3x9UqNi7BPY/s1600/avenezuela.png

      shows how many inhabitants each Venezuelan state had PER PUPIL in 1920.
      No wonder the comandante-presidente was born in Barinas.

        • There were no numbers for Amazonas’ pupils on the reference book (excellent book, by the way), even if there were other stats for it. Now: given its tiny population back then, Amazonas’ influence on the general picture of Venezuela was minimal. Barinas and other Llanos states had a large weight then and that weight has increased through higher birth rates and migration to secondary urban centres on the coast. The social problems there are transported elsewhere.
          I really wonder how the Llanero states would compare to Miranda if they also took part in PISA now.

  2. This is very consistent with HCR’s focus on education. Great way to put wonk on rhetoric…

    Education can only change lives and the country in general if it is changed in and of itself. And that needs to attend to true and independent standards. My heartfelt congratulations to all…

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