Education in Colombia

image of Education in Colombia

How can Colombia improve both the quality and equity of its education system while also addressing efficiency challenges? Despite a fundamental transformation of its education system over the past two decades, Colombia faces two critical challenges: high levels of inequality from the earliest years and low levels of quality across its education system. This report assesses Colombia’s policies and practices against the best approaches in education and skills from across the OECD. It analyses its education system’s major strengths and the challenges it faces, from early childhood education and care to tertiary education. With insights drawn from international research, it offers recommendations on how Colombia can improve quality and equity to reach its goal of being the “most educated” country in Latin America by 2025. This report will be of interest in Colombia as well as other countries looking to raise the quality, equity and efficiency of their education systems.


Upper secondary education in Colombia

This chapter reviews Colombia’s upper secondary education (USE) system, which lasts two years and targets students aged 15 and 16 (Grades 10 and 11). After examining the key features and trends at this level, it puts the spotlight on policy solutions to ensure Colombian students acquire the skills they need for work or further learning. The chapter highlights the importance of a comprehensive approach to USE, which consolidates core skills while providing greater access to work-based learning and more effective career guidance as a means to smooth students’ transition to the labour market. It urges the need to address students’ learning gaps before they reach USE, reduce the opportunity costs of education and develop a positive school climate. The chapter also examines how Colombia can reinforce national leadership and local capacity to steer reforms and enhance the relevance of USE to the local economy.


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