77% of primary school students unable to read text in Arabic

The Ministry of National Education, Preliminary Education and Sports has announced edifying figures concerning the school level of pupils. Thursday, Minister Chakib Benmoussa declined at a press conference, the new roadmap for the reform of the education system 2022-2026 which will tackle the quality of education with an unprecedented budget.

Nearly 77% of primary school students are unable to read an Arabic text of 80 words, the ministry revealed, and 70% cannot read a French text consisting of barely 15 words. Here is the bitter observation that the Moroccan education system is facing at the same time when contract teachers complained of not having civil servant status and at the same time when massive demonstrations denounced the new threshold (of 30 years, editor’s note) for the recruitment of school teachers.

At the level of 5th primary schoolchildren, figures from the Minister of National Education add that 87% of students are unable to complete a simple division. Similarly, the school dropout figures are still very high, reaching 53% in middle school and dropping to 24% in high school.

Presenting these figures, the minister also explained the new strategy for education in Morocco, which revolves around 12 commitments made by 2026 to reform the education sector.

In this new roadmap which must create a better public school for all, and which has been discussed with more than 100,000 people including teachers, families of students, and schools, Chakib Benmoussa plans to work on several levels.

The approach aims to act on 3 key elements of the education system, namely satisfied students who master basic skills, valued teachers and a welcoming school.

Among other things, the minister has set himself the objective of reducing the school dropout rate by a third, doubling the number of primary school pupils mastering the fundamentals and doubling the number of pupils with extracurricular activities. Objective evaluations will be carried out each year to know the impact of these measures.

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