SUMMARY OF THE PRESS RELEASE PISA reveals a worrying high academic failure rate among Spanish-speaking children in Catalonia

High academic failure rate among Spanish-speaking children in Catalonia

PISA reveals a worrying high academic failure rate among Spanish-speaking children in Catalonia Barcelona, Spain October 2014

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Analysis of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) results in Catalonia has revealed a worrying high academic failure rate among Spanish-speaking children, which doubles the ratio among their Catalan-speaking fellow classmates. Specifically, in the latest edition of PISA in 2012, 23% of Spanish-speaking students could not surpass the lowest PISA level (level 1) whereas only 11% of Catalan-speaking pupils were in that situation. Failure rate among Spanish-speaking children in Catalonia is significantly higher than in other Spanish regions with similar per capita income, social development level and urban population ratio like the Basque Country and Madrid. Gap in academic results between Spanish- and Catalan-speaking children affects boys and girls similarly and widens in public schools. The poor performance of Spanish-speaking students in Catalonia seems related to the peculiar educational system imposed by the Catalan regional Government that denies Spanish-speaking children their right to education in their mother tongue whereas makes compulsory the so-called language immersion system, that is, the obligatory use of Catalan as the sole medium of instruction. In education it is widely accepted that students learn faster and better when they receive education in their own mother tongue. This has been demonstrated by numerous studies from prestigious international organizations like UNESCO and UNICEF. However, Catalan Government has never accepted international pedagogical recommendations. PISA results show that the current monolingual immersion-education system in Catalonia is not a factor of social cohesion. On the contrary, creates a major fracture and educational inequality between Spanish- and Catalan-speaking populations.

Convivencia Cívica Catalana is a non-governmental organization created in 1998 which defends citizens’ rights and gives insight into Catalan reality from an independent point of view.

PAG.

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