Problemas en el sistema educativo argentino

Enseñanza. Pedagogía # Argentinan educational system. Estructure. Main problems. Teacher's training. Quality. Quantity. Equality

  • Enviado por: Sara
  • Idioma: inglés
  • País: España España
  • 13 páginas
publicidad
publicidad

THE CURRENT SITUATION AND MAIN PROBLEMS OF THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM

'Problemas en el sistema educativo argentino'

  • Estructure of the Argentinian Educational System

  • The new structure of the National System of Education includes, as it is explained down, the following levels: Initial, General Basic Education, Polimodal, Higher Education and Postgraduate Education. The levels define the tracks in which the system will have to take care of the fulfilment of the necessities stated by the society. Those necessities are determined by particular contexts related to space and time patterns. The levels correspond to individual needs specified by the evolutionary process, and are articulated with necessities pertaining to the psychobiological and socio-cultural development.

    The length of the level is related to the social and personal necessities that concerns the education such as:

    - the prevention and early education, and the accurate aid that guarantees the quality of the results through all the stages of the learning process.

    - the acquisition of the basic competences, the appropriation of the basic and common

    contents essential to the population.

    - the mastering of knowledge and intermediate capacities, desirables for everyone;

    - the fulfilment of good levels of development and of differential and optional competences.

    As far as the structure of the system, the law establishes that the levels and special regimes must articulate themselves in order to facilitate horizontal and vertical mobilization of the students and indicates the elemental characteristics of each kind of education and level. These dispositions are complemented with the specifications stated by the Federal Council of Culture and Education.

    The system of education of Argentine recognizes a distinction between common education and special regimes.

    Common Education

    * Initial Education*

    Includes two types of institutions:

    a) early childhood education

    b) kindergarten

    a) Early childhood education: is destined to kinds under 3 years old, and its duties are to guarantee the right of the child to receive care related to his/her basic needs and education, and to promote a greater equity taking into account initial unevenness.

    b) Kindergarden: it is intended for children of three to five years old, being obligatory the last year of schooling. Its duties are to deepen educational success obtained among the family context, develop the competences proper to the level and to endeavour the articulation with the Basic Common Education.

    Their objectives are to promote the structuring of thought, imagination and communication; to favour maturation of children; to stimulate habits of social integration, to fortify the bonds between the school and the family; and to prevent and care of physical, psychic and social inequalities. The authorization and supervision of the buildings are in charge of the jurisdictional authorities. The jurisdictional authorities have under their scope of responsibilities those related to the supervision of the activities destined to children to up to 3 years old.

    * Basic Common Education *

    It is obligatory and of nine years in length. Children start this level at six years old. A pedagogical unit must be understood as integral and is organized in cycles. The Federal Council of Culture and Education defined the existence of three cycles for the Basic Common Education, of three years each one: First Cycle (for children of 6 to 8 years old), Second Cycle (for children of 9 to 11 years old), and Third Cycle (for children of 12 to 14 years old). The ages for each cycle are mentioned only as a hint.

    Their objectives are to provide a common basic education to all the children and teenagers.

    Among its objectives are: to favour the individual and social development; integrates positive attitudes towards work environments as a pedagogical methodology; to acquire habits of hygiene and health care, to stimulate the knowledge and the critical appreciation of traditions and cultural heritage, among others.

    * Polimodal *

    It should take a minimum of three years in length and follows the fulfilment of the Common Basic Education. Some of the objectives are: to prepare students to the exert of their rights and citizen responsibilities, to deepen theoretical knowledge of a set subjects clustered according to the following topics: humanities, social, scientific and technical; to develop instrumental skills and apprenticeship related to the working environment; to favour intellectual autonomy; propitiate sports practice. In addition, it has to familiarize students towards higher education. The Polimodal Education contemplates five modalities:

    __ Natural Science

    __ Economy and Management

    __ Humanities and Social Science

    __ Production of Goods and Services

    __ Communication, Arts and Design

    Each modality must ensure a minimum of common competences required to participate actively, reflexively and critically in the different contexts of social and productive life. Institutions can offer one or more modalities.

    The Polimodal diploma has its own value and is equivalent in international terms to the

    accreditation of a formal education of second level. It enables the enrolment to any career of higher education level.

    Education establishes that the Polimodal Education can be articulated with the Techno - professional tracks. The techno - professional tracks should offer an initial professional improvement that favours the performance in specific areas. The techno - professional tracks are defined as an offering articulated with Polimodal Education that set out to develop professional competences that assures adequate fulfilment within occupational areas for which, according to its complexities, demand specific technological education of professional profile.

    It's a necessary condition for a student that wants to enrol in a Techno - professional Track to have completed the obligatory schooling. The offering of Techno - professional Tracks is structured taking into account explicit professional profiles elaborated through mechanisms of consultation organized by the Ministry of Education and must count with active participation of agents of production and educational community.

    LEVEL

    COURSE

    AGE

    OBLIGATION

     

     

     

     

     

     

    3

     

    INITIAL

     

    4

     

     

     

    5

    Obligatory

     

     

     

     

     

    1st Year

    6

    Obligatory

    E.G.B. 1 (General Basic Education 1st)

    2nd Year

    7

    Obligatory

     

    3rd Year

    8

    Obligatory

     

     

     

     

     

    4th Year

    9

    Obligatory

    E.G.B. 2 (General Basic Education 2nd)

    5th Year

    10

    Obligatory

     

    6th Year

    11

    Obligatory

     

     

     

     

     

    7th Year

    12

    Obligatory

    E.G.B. 3 (General Basic Education 3rd)

    8th Year

    13

    Obligatory

     

    9th Year

    14

    Obligatory

     

     

     

     

     

    1st Year

    15

    Non-obligatory

    POLIMODAL (5 Diferent Orientations )

    2nd Year

    16

    Non-obligatory

     

    3rd Year

    17

    Non-obligatory

     

     

     

     

    HIGHER EDUCATION:

    TERCIARY AND

    UNIVERSITARY

     

    18 or more

     

    'Problemas en el sistema educativo argentino'

    2.Main problems within the educational sistem

    The educational system in Argentina mainly needs to make important changes in the organization of the educational system: in the endowment and the allocation of resources.

    These organizing changes have to foresee the federal coparticipation (to level the socioeconomic possibilities between the diferent Argentinian regions) and transfer the power of the resources and of the educational system to the schools as well (decentralization).

    All this problems stem from a dreadful organization of the educational expenses:

    • On the public expenditure they have 2 points less in comparison with the developed countries.

    • About staff costs Argentina have 9 points less than the developed countries.

    • The spending in investigation, and investment on new resources is only the 2% of the total spending on eduaction.

    Is important to stand out the deadfull allocation of resources (responsability of the provinces). The right allocation of the resources and the elimination of the bureaucratic costs would generate a remarkable improvement of the Argentinian educational System.

    Some details about the Argentinian Educational System in 2000:

    Number of Pupils: 10.442.350 pupils.

    Number of Schools: 40.825 schools.

    Number of teachers: 633.253 teachers.

    Hours of teaching: 5.135.034 hours.

    2.1> Possibilities of secondary and terciary education

    In the Argentinian Educational System only the primary education is obligatory and financing by the government.

    The secondary education (15 to 17 years Old) in not obligatory on the Argentinian Educational System. On the 2000 there were registered 88.019 pupils at the secondary education (from the 10.442.350 pupils registered on that year): 54.313 at the bachellor form, 27.879 at the comercial form, 1434 at agricultural form and 4.081 at the tecnic form.

    With regard to the terciary education we found two kinds of terciary education: Non-University studies amd University studies.

    At the non-university education there were registered on the 2000 the ammount of 440.164 pupils ( 254.031 at the public -but not financiated schools- and 186.133 at the private schools).

    With reference to the university schools we found an incredible regressive financial program that makes this kind of studies difficult to afford by the main students of the country. The main umiversity of the country is the University of Buenos Aires who have a fundamental role in the construction of a more equitable society in Argentina. Is considered one of the best universities in Latin America. But at this moment his leadership is in danger because of his dreadful financial program (specially with regard to his effectiveness and equity).

    2.3> % enrolment

    PRIMARY SCHOOL EDUCATION:
    Educational Enrollment (1982) ---------------------4,197,372
    Educational Enrollment Rate (%) (1981) ---------119%
    Teachers -------------------------------------------------206,535 (1982)
    Teacher-Pupil Ratio -----------------------------------1:20
    Female Enrollment Rate (%) ------------------------49%

    SECONDARY SCHOOL EDUCATION:
    Educational Enrollment (1982) ---------------------1,366,444 (1981)
    Educational Enrollment Rate (%) (1981) ---------59%
    Teachers -------------------------------------------------178,681 (1979)
    Teacher-Pupil Ratio -----------------------------------1:8
    Female Enrollment Rate (%) ------------------------53%

    TERTIARY SCHOOL (HIGHER) EDUCATION:
    Educational Enrollment (1982) ---------------------550,556
    Educational Enrollment Rate (%) (1981) ---------23.6%
    Teachers -------------------------------------------------53,166
    Teacher-Pupil Ratio -----------------------------------1:10
    Female Enrollment Rate (%) ------------------------53%

    2.4> Curriculum, methodology and role of teachers

    Curriculum and methodology:

    The National Ministry of Education is responsible for “Establishing, in agreement with the Federal Council for Culture and Education (Consejo Federal de Cultura y Educación - CFCyE), objectives and common basic curriculum contents in the different educational levels, cycles and special programs to facilitate pupils' horizontal and vertical mobility, leaving sufficient space available in the curriculum for the inclusion of content in line with Provincial, Municipal, Community and School requirements” .

    Between 1994 and 1998 the Common Basic Contents, the curricular designs, the subject areas and methods for evaluating the cycles, levels and special programs that constitute the education system were agreed in the Federal Council of Culture and Education.

    The curricular policy developed during the 1990's set three levels of curricular specification: national, provincial and City of Buenos Aires, and institutional. The Common Basic Contents (CBC) for the different levels in the education system, determined at the national level, lay down the universe of knowledge considered legitimate for teaching in schools throughout the country.

    The curricular reform process mobilized significant technical and financial resources. The complete renovation of teaching content for each of the new levels, cycles and subject areas meant teaching methods were significantly modernized.

    Teacher Training:

    The Federal Council of Culture and Education established the basis of the system of teacher training. The academic organization distinguishes, on one hand teacher training of Initial level and of the first and second cycles of Basic General Education. On the other hand, there exists teacher training of the third level of the GBE and Polimodal. The first mentioned could be developed within non- universities Higher Education institutions and within universities. It could offer a multidisciplinary training that guarantees quality of teaching in subjects such as: maths, language, social science, natural science, ethics and citizenry and technological knowledge, artistic education and sports. The second orientation of teaching development corresponds to the third level of Basic General Education and Polimodal and must offer a disciplinal training that assures quality of teaching of the Common Basic Contents related to this level and for the Oriented Basic Contents of the Polimodal level. In every case, they should be done in Universities or in non- universities institutions that subscribed agreements with universities or are specifically accredited as capable of engage in those tasks. The Federal Council of Culture and Education defined 4 instances of continuing teacher development:

    a) undergraduate training

    b) improvement during teaching activities;

    c) training of teachers for new professional abilities;

    d) pedagogical training for non-teachers.

    The upgrading and support for the teaching profession is one of the priorities of educational policy for the ten years 2001-2010. Mention has already been made of the difficulties for reform with regard to teachers participating in policy design and implementation. For various reasons, the courses implemented through the Teacher Further Education Network have not made any significant contribution to improvements in the day to day practices of primary and secondary teachers. Improvement in quality requires the upgrading of teaching as an indispensable condition for the functioning of the education system as a whole. It is necessary to develop policies to improve the capacity of schools and their authorities to lead educational projects and integrate them into their communities. In general, institutional autonomy requires a strategy for improving management at all levels of the education system.

    During this decade particular attention will be paid to:

    1. The training of school authorities and teachers in competencies such as leadership,

    delegation, problem solving, communication, teamwork, foresight and negotiation.

    2. There will be a solid, sustained policy of support, improvement and strengthening of the teacher's role and working conditions. It will be attempted to incorporate teachers' views in the definition and focusing of educational policies.

    With regard to teacher training, the National Teacher Education Program (Programa Nacional de Formación Docente) gives priority to the following actions:

    1. Strengthen teacher training institutions through the promotion of self-evaluation, attendance by teachers at specialization courses run by universities and the design of networked specialist activities in teacher training establishments that are to function as poles of development.

    2. Encourage the influence of teacher training institutions on the quality of the education system through collaboration with teachers in the surrounding schools and the encouragement of innovative projects in those schools.

    3. Establish networks between Teacher Training Institutes for the purpose of designing

    cooperative actions and exchanging up-to-date information.

    2.6>Female Vs Male

    Since the 1980s, the female labour force in Argentina has been increasing due to the reduction of family income and the increasing male underemployment and unemployment rates. The country's economic situation has forced women to enter the labour market. Another cause of the increasing female labour force is due to the higher educational achievements of women entering the labour market (Las relaciones de género en la Argentina). However, the economic and social changes of recent years have negatively impacted Argentinian women. In fact, the rates of female unemployment, underemployment, instability and non-registered work, disparity in wages, and poverty have all increased (National Council of Women).

    Education and Training Education is essential for improving women's living standards and enabling them to exercise greater "voice" in decision-making in the family, the community, the place of paid work, and the public arena of politics. Basic literacy and other basic skills are absolutely vital to women's empowerment, and without the skills acquired in secondary education, women cannot obtain better paid employment (UNIFEM Biennial Report).

    In 1997, the estimated adult illiteracy rate for the total population was 3.4% for men and 3.5% for women (UNESCO). In 2000, the rate improved to 3.1% for men and 3.2% for women (UN, Social Indicators). UNESCO defines an illiterate person as someone who, while understanding the situation, cannot read or write a short, simple statement on his or her everyday life.

    According to UNESCO, the gross enrolment rate is the total enrolment in primary and secondary education, regardless of age, divided by the population of the age group which officially corresponds to primary or secondary schooling (the ratios include the number of children who repeat a school year). The gross enrolment ratio for tertiary education is not available (UNESCO).

    According to the National Council of Women, in 1994 there were 109,6 women studying in universities nationwide for every 100 men. In 1998, a study on gender revealed that 48% of university students were male and 52% were female.

    2.7> Quality, quantity and the equality of the educational system

    Despite the efforts of the national and provincial states during the last decade, the system's problems of quality, equity and internal performance persist. The objectives proposed with the transformation initiated ten years ago have not yet been achieved.

    In connection with teaching quality and school performance, the national evaluation schemes show that a significant proportion of pupils do not achieve the minimum levels of knowledge and competencies required for participation in social and productive life. These schemes show a wide range and variety of results among social sectors, regions and provinces.

    As a result of the actions of the last decade, there has been an increase in the coverage in the system as a whole. There is a trend to growth in school attendance by young people aged 13 to 19 focused on the quintile with the lowest per capita income. Nevertheless, the objective of universal access and continuity in basic education for all Argentine children and young people has not yet been achieved.

    It should be stressed that the quality and performance of education and access thereto are conditioned by the economic structure, the regional and social inequality of which has become very marked during the last decade. Despite the level of investment and the significant degree of coverage achieved, the compensatory actions implemented by the Ministry of Education lacked sufficient articulation both within the national Ministry and with other state areas and organizations. Current conditions require more efficient use of the resources and the drawing up and execution of integrated strategies for social development. The different types of direct and indirect subsidies to populations at risk of exclusion - as in the case of scholarships for pupils in the lower secondary school - have helped to increase entry and continuity in school. However, there has been little in the way of radical strategies to change the current cost-benefit relationship for these sectors of the population. In fact, it would appear that the objective of retaining pupils in Secondary Education and for them to effectively achieve fundamental learnings is only being met in some schools.

    Besides these constraints, subsidies to pupils are inadequate. Evaluations by the National Program of Student Scholarships show that in 1999 only 43% of the 267.000 candidates actually received them. The scholarships have managed to cover only a quarter of potential recipients11.

    Improvements and refurbishing of school buildings and investment in equipment (textbooks, teaching libraries, computers, some laboratory equipment) are still far from being sufficient to guarantee equality of learning opportunities for all children in the country. The commitments by the national and provincial authorities in the Federal Pact of 1994, in which targets were defined for equipment such as libraries and computer equipment, and infrastructure improvement in all schools, have not been fully met.

    Other factors also contribute to the persistence of inequality. Although the resources provided by the national authorities as compensatory programs have been progressively distributed -more resources to the less well-endowed provinces-, these have been insufficient to reverse or even compensate for the limitations of provincial funding. One of the factors that would seem to have restricted the effectiveness of the national resources in improving the distribution of educational spending has been a "substitution effect" between national and provincial resources. This means that, in the years when there is an increase in resources from the compensatory programs, most provinces devote fewer resources to education.

    Performance levels of pupils from the most underprivileged sectors are a key factor in articulating the problem of quality and equity.

    The “Social Plan” and “New School” programs used various means of encouraging innovation in educational institutions, but it has not yet proved possible to provide widespread projects that can be evaluated and transferred and have an impact on results that will improve quality and increase retention in the poorer sectors.

    In short, improvement in the conditions of equity and quality require -as well as a larger budged than has been made available in the last few years - the definition of precise, medium term goals, that can be evaluated, the setting of public criteria for resource allocation and planning in which there is convergence and articulation of the different social policies with pedagogical mechanisms for improvement in quality, and in pupil retention and performance.

    *Literature: