x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

Educational achievement's all in the curriculum

KHDA analysts have underlined the role of curriculum in achieving better education results.

DUBAI // Pupils attending schools following international curricula showed much higher reading proficiency in the Pisa test than their peers in government schools.

Analysts said the tests underlined how the right curriculum could contribute to pupils' achievement levels.

Those attending International Baccalaureate (IB) and UK schools received the highest scores.

At least 12 per cent of IB students have reading and science skills that would define them as high achievers, while over 20 per cent would be defined as high achievers in mathematics - similar to results in top-performing countries such as Shanghai, Korea and Finland.

There were almost no high achievers identified in schools following the national curriculum.

Mike Helal, the director for the Middle East and North Africa at Parkville Global Advisory, which helped analyse the report, said the right curriculum could help overcome socioeconomic factors.

"Substantial progress can be attained by pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds if there is a change to the approaches to teaching and learning and the school environment," he said.

* Afshan Ahmed