The Road to Hemispheric Cooperation: Beyond the Cartagena Summit of the Americas

Education in the Americas: What the Summit Missed

Education in the Americas: What the Summit Missed

This comprehensive and excellent survey of education in Latin America stresses the importance of systemic problems that result in growing inequity, rising levels of youth violence, and persistently low levels of citizen education. The failure of the Cartagena Summit to adequately address the challenge of education does not dilute the national challenges that each leader faces back home. Poor-quality education from teachers who are inadequately paid, trained and supervised has resulted in students from the hemisphere registering the lowest performance levels on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) reading and math scores. Beyond the testing of students in third and eighth grades, the authors extend their analysis to the performance of the region’s universities. In the 2011- 2012 ranking of the world’s 400 top universities, no Latin American university ranked in the top 100. Less than onequarter of all university graduates receive science or engineering degrees and even fewer receive doctorates. Brazil produces only one doctoral graduate for every 70,000 people. Chile produces one for every 140,000. This compares to an OECD average of one per every 5,000 people.

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