RSI Corporate - Licensing

The Secret to Poland’s Successful Education Reform

Education World – Cathy Rubin

“Poland’s OECD PISA rankings moved from below to above the OECD average and is now close to the top-performing countries. Before 2000, Poland’s students had one of the lowest achievement levels in Europe. Notably, Poland is “one of the few European countries that achieved strong improvement of student improvement over the last decade.” The report notes the most significant reform practice was the 1999 extension of comprehensive education by one year. Support for pre-school education was expanded as well as the curriculum for vocational schools. Other reform tactics included reducing the size differences between secondary schools (secondary schools used to be the largest across OECD countries but are now the smallest), decentralization, increased school autonomy, professional development, and the introduction of national exams. The report cites yearly national exams, a new curriculum focused on learning results and a new data driven system of school evaluation as further strategies which fostered higher quality schools. While Polish adults still trail behind adults in the Czech Republic (CR) in terms of skills, the students in Poland are now ranking higher than those of Hungary, CR, and Slovakia. This indicates improvement to come for the adults in Poland, as well. Jakubowski’s report does not merely focus on Poland, but also on how other countries can benefit from Poland’s example, and how Poland can also continue to improve. It is still not competitive with the top ranking OECD countries worldwide, but it is certainly getting there.”(more)

What the U.S. could learn from the Polish education system

USA Today – Sean Williams

“Twenty-five years ago, Americans like economist Jeffrey Sachs were running around Poland helping to turn moribund socialism into a vibrant market economy. Now, with the U.S. trying to fix its lagging educational system, it might just learn a thing or two from Poland, which…beats the U.S. on most performance measures.” (more)

Poland: Education’s superpowers have a new kid on the bloc

The Sydney Morning Herald – Alicia PQ Wittmeyer

“Shanghai (which, as many have pointed out, is not a country), Hong Kong, Taipei, Singapore, Korea and Japan continue to dominate in maths. The US continues to stagnate and declinists continue to fret. But overlooked amid this familiar routine is the ongoing rise of Poland: eastern Europe’s new education powerhouse.”(more)

Poland scores late goals in education

BBC – Bill Hicks

“Among eastern European, former-Communist countries, Poland has been the biggest education success story – following modernising reforms launched at the end of the 1990s. It has also been more successful than most countries at one of the holy grails for education reform, equality of opportunity. Poland’s schools are succeeding, more than many others, in narrowing the gap between the weak and the strong, the gifted and the challenged.” (more)