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Education in Costa Rica

image of Education in Costa Rica

As Costa Rica’s economy has developed in recent decades, the education system that helped propel the country to upper middle-income status now needs reform to respond to rising expectations and changing demands for skills. New challenges are emerging: economic growth has recently slowed, inequality is widening and productivity growth is weak. How can Costa Rica improve both the quality and equity of its education system while also addressing efficiency challenges? This report assesses Costa Rica’s policies and practices against best practice in education from across the OECD and other reference countries in the Latin American region. It analyses its education system’s major strengths and the challenges it faces, from early childhood education and care to tertiary education. It offers recommendations on how Costa Rica can improve quality and equity to ensure strong, sustainable and inclusive growth. This report will be of interest in Costa Rica as well as other countries looking to raise the quality, equity and efficiency of their education systems.

English

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Assessment and recommendations

Costa Rica is one of the oldest and most stable democracies in Latin America and boasts among the highest levels of well-being. Having established near universal literacy by the end of the 19th century, its economic and social development has been and remains deeply intertwined with a commitment to education. As the economy has developed in recent decades, the education system that helped propel the country to upper middle-income status now needs to evolve to respond to rising expectations and changing demands for skills. New challenges are emerging: economic growth has recently slowed, inequality is widening and productivity growth is weak. The National Development Plan for 2015/2018 rightly sees education as a key means to turn these negative trends around and put the country back on the path of strong, inclusive growth.

English

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