Colombia is struggling to keep up with the English speaking world because English teachers throughout the country are demonstrating below average teaching competence, the country’s Education Minister admitted Tuesday.
According to the Minister for Education, the main problem arises with English tuition, where students understand the grammar but cannot speak the language. The Minister explained the reason for this being that English teachers are not trained to speak the language but instead to teache the grammar and vocabulary and thus the children are given no opportunity to practice speaking.
“We need not only to teach but to ensure that children learn. We don’t want students to solely memorize content but also to enhance their attitudes,” stated the Minister for Education in a report by news site Caracol on Tuesday.
Substandard instruction is also revealed in Maths and Natural Sciences where students learn mechanically and systematically without any reference to contexts to which they can relate. As a result students are not developing abstract, indpendent thought patterns.
The Minister informed Caracol that the Colombian Government is keen to establish an educational system in which more students leave [college] with satisfactory levels and are able to go on to higher education and university.