Friday, 30 August 2013

Quebec Ranked 9th in Canada in Science Education

More primary-school science urgedAn interesting article published in the Gazette on August 22, 2013 has brought the spotlight on the science education in primary schools, with the Gazette noting that in primary education in Quebec, science is the first subject to be cut when teachers run out of time. Quebec ranked 9th out of Canadian provinces in territories for student performance in science.
Read more for details on this evaluation and future steps.

In recent years, standardized testing in Quebec in 2010 showed that Middle School students (Grade 8) had fallen below their other Canadian peers in their scientific understanding and knowledge. In contrast, students performed at a high level in mathematics and French, placing first in Mathematics among all the provinces and territories.

This prompted President of Conseil superieur de l'education Claude Lessard to state:

“We have to reserve hours for science in (elementary school). We can’t leave it to the discretion of the teachers. What we have seen, for far too long, is that when choices have to be made, it’s science that gets cut.”

Lessard said part of the problem lies with the lack of “clear direction” from the Education Department about the importance of teaching science.

Lessard also said that Quebec also needs to improve science instruction for future teachers because too many primary school teachers say they don’t feel qualified to teach the subject.

You can read the full article here in English or in French

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