The return to face-to-face classes represents a new opportunity to face the urgent challenge of achieving quality education says Panama’s Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (Cciap).
On Monday, March 7, the 2022 school term begins in person, after two years of the teaching-learning process altered by the pandemic.
In its weekly letter, the business association says that with the return to the classroom, the fact remains that before the pandemic, students did not assimilate the expected knowledge, which was later reflected in the international tests.
“The foregoing leads us to remember that, with the return to the classroom, we will have to face that other challenge that cannot be postponed: quality education. For nearly four decades, we have dragged this debt, which, surely, the pandemic deepened ", said the Chamber.
“There are various studies that show the educational reality and the proposals to address the problem. One of the main conclusions is that no educational system will be better than the quality achieved by teachers and professors. In addition, it is necessary to work on a national comprehensive teacher training system.
"Additionally, there is a marked outdated methodology and study plans, which -among other things- are unrelated to the reality and needs of Panama and the world."
The Cciap recalled that it is necessary to address the insufficient and inadequate infrastructure, the inequity in access between educational regions, the existing disparity in internet access and connectivity, which are factors that affect the teaching process of students.
It is emphasized that Panama has a significant educational gap and that if the opportunity to correct the path is not taken advantage of the country will be condemned to failure.
“The return to classes represents getting back on track. Now it is urgent to take the next step: commit to the educational quality of our system”.