UNESCO warns of the need for greater presence of concepts such as knowledge of the world, climate change and gender equality in the Latin America and the Caribbean’s curricula

The report “¿Qué se espera que aprendan los estudiantes de América Latina y el Caribe? Análisis curricular del Estudio Regional Comparativo y Explicativo (ERCE 2019), (What are students in Latin America and the Caribbean expected to learn? Curriculum Analysis of the Regional Comparative and Explanatory Study, ERCE 2019), was released by the Regional Bureau for Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (OREALC/UNESCO Santiago), through its Latin American Laboratory for Assessment of the Quality of Education (LLECE).

This curriculum analysis is part of the ERCE 2019 study, a large-scale research study assessing the learning achievements of students in Latin America and the Caribbean, the results of which will be available in mid 2021.

UNESCO’s research, which was supported by UNICEF and with the technical participation of Universidad de Chile’s Center for Advanced Research in Education (CIAE), focused on the analysis of the curriculum content of 3rd and 6th grades of primary school in 19 countries: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

The Director of the Regional Bureau for Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (OREALC/UNESCO Santiago), Claudia Uribe, explained that this study was carried out to learn about the contents and competencies prioritized by the different countries of the region and to highlight the visions and curricular trends at the time prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. “These are inputs that UNESCO makes available so that each country may review its national curriculum from a comparative perspective and assess how it responds to what students need to learn in order to develop academically and socio-emotionally as citizens of the 21st century, in an increasingly diverse society, as proposed by the 2030 Education Agenda”.

Among the findings, the report highlights in the area of Reading the relevance of working with a diversity of texts and the emphasis on literal and inferential reading comprehension, as well as reading strategies for comprehension, such as monitoring or re-reading. The report also points out a lesser presence of concepts linked to the areas of Decoding and Reflection and Evaluation on texts, which is especially relevant in these times due to the consumption of different quality contents by children on the Internet.

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