India agrees to end PISA boycott; will participate in PISA 2021

The Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Prakash Javadekar in the first week of September 2018 decided to end the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) boycott. Resultantly, the ministry will send a team of officers to Paris this year to negotiate India’s terms of participation in PISA 2021 with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation Development (OECD).

Key Highlights:-

1. Unlike 2009, when schools in Tamil Nadu and Himachal Pradesh had participated, the Union government will request OECD to administer the test across all schools in Chandigarh in 2021.
2. There are roughly 100 government; government-aided; and private senior secondary schools in the Union Territory.
3. Apart from the schools in Chandigarh, the HRD Ministry also suggested that all Kendriya Vidyalayas (KVs) and Navodaya Vidyalayas (NVs), funded and run by the Centre, shall take the test.
4. The HRD Ministry has already obtained the consent of the Office of the Chandigarh Administrator for the same.

The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) was introduced in the year 2000 by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation Development (OECD). PISA is a competency-based test. It tests the learning levels of 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics and science.

The test is carried out once in every three years. As on date, there are 80 countries participating in PISA, including China and Vietnam. In 2012, schools of Shanghai in China topped the reading, mathematics and science test, followed closely by Singapore. In 2015, Singapore, Japan and Estonia were ranked as top three countries, in that order.

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