LET’S UNITE TO TACKLE THE MATH CRISIS: Insights and reflections from PISA 2022

10 min

Dear friends with interest in education and our children’s future,

I am both a business leader for an edtech company and father of two elementary school children. In both these roles, I spend all my days (and nights) thinking about how to ensure the growth and development of not just my own, but every child.  

The PISA 2022 results were released yesterday and I spent the entire evening reading through the report, the night lying awake thinking about what it really means, and this morning reading articles in the media from PISA representatives, educators and politicians. My conclusion is: we have a massive societal challenge to address the concerns in the PISA report - and this challenge demands us all to contribute!

The report underscores a universal decline in performance across OECD countries compared to the 2018 study, attributing factors such as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, variations in the resilience of education systems, inequalities in student support and access to resources, and issues related to school governance. My key observations are below:

  • Growing inequalities: A shortage of educational resources, from qualified teachers to high-quality digital tools, is a problem for everyone, but especially for disadvantaged schools and students. This makes the socioeconomic gap even bigger and worse.

  • Teacher challenges: Educators face overwhelming workloads, struggling to balance one-size-fits-all teaching, follow-up on learning outcomes, and provide individualized attention. A staggering 40% of students feel teachers lack interest in their learning.

  • Digital transformation: While digital tools can enhance learning, they must be used correctly. The study reveals a positive correlation between moderate use of digital devices and higher performance, emphasizing the importance of the technology supporting rather than distracting from learning. Correctly used, digital tools can support math performance with 11 points in the study.

  • Home support: A consistent finding underscores the positive impact of support from home on student confidence, reducing anxiety and enhancing overall performance.

  • Covid's impact: In many countries schools closed and students were forced into remote schooling. This amplified differences between motivated and non-motivated students, emphasized the crucial role of support from home, and accelerated the digital transformation in education.

Addressing these challenges is complex and requires a collaborative effort from policymakers, schools, educators, edtech companies, and parents. As both a leader for an edtech company and parent, I am eager to do what I can. How can you help out?

At Albert Group, our mission aligns with the need highlighted by PISA — to empower every child to reach their full potential through engaging and personalized learning experiences. Here are some actionable suggestions:

  • Early learning matters: Foster early learning to build children's confidence before they enter formal schooling. Research indicates that early intervention significantly impacts a child's positive experience in school. At Albert Group we provide learning apps for all ages: in preschool age we want to stimulate playlearning; in lower elementary school we support learning the fundamental skills in the core subjects and making school fun; and in upper elementary school we enable practicing the core knowledge needed to prepare for national exams and higher education. 

  • Parental support: Parents play a pivotal role in shaping a child's attitude towards school. Actively engage in your child's education through activities like reading, writing, and math exercises. Albert's apps offer research-based pedagogics to support focused learning that can be used by the children alone or even better together with the parents.

  • Digital tools as support to traditional teaching: Recognize the potential of digital tools to address teaching capacity constraints. High-quality digital learning tools allow efficient testing, personalized learning, and timely feedback, enhancing the learning experience. Our Albert school products have advanced teacher platforms that give a good class overview, enable easy testing and progress monitoring, and individualized challenges.

  • Quality of digital tools matters: Ensure that digital tools in pre-schools and schools meet quality standards and are used purposefully. Distinguish between passive entertainment screen time and active, curriculum-based learning through research-backed apps. Albert Group’s products are all built around proven pedagogical principles, based on local curriculums, developed by certified teachers and made engaging through positive game mechanisms.

To delve deeper into these insights, visit our Albert blog (LINK) for research-based articles on screen time, early learning, and other crucial topics.To learn about Albert’s products and how they can support in schools or at home, please visit our corporate website (LINK). 

We at Albert Group are also happy to join forces in battling this challenge so don’t hesitate to reach out to me (jonas@hejalbert.se) or our lead educator Madeleine (madeleine@hejalbert.se) with any questions, comments or ideas for partnering.

Let's come together to navigate the challenges highlighted by PISA 2022 and pave the way for a brighter educational future.

Warm regards,

Jonas Mårtensson

CEO, Albert Group

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