NiñaSTEM Pueden (STEM, Girls Can), launched in 2017, is a joint initiative between the OECD and the Government of Mexico seeking to increase the number of girls and young women entering STEM careers. While Mexico has made progress towards achieving gender parity with regards to participation in education, there are persistent gaps in boys’ and girls’ achievements in the physical and natural sciences, and women and girls continue to be under-represented in STEM subjects and careers. The project therefore focuses on challenging gender stereotypes and convincing girls that they can be successful in STEM. It introduces participants to different STEM fields through workshops, conferences and digital content. At the same time, successful Mexican women working in STEM careers act as mentors to girls in the process of choosing their study options, and work with students and their families in out-of-school learning activities. In 2020, activities included a workshop in Mexico City where mentors worked with 220 boys and girls on mechanics and robotics and an aerospace conference with presentations on the future of work.

By 2020, the initiative had reached 3 200 girls, 800 boys, 270 teachers, and 260 parents across 10 cities in Mexico. In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, technology companies supported the initiative by providing girls with digital tools and platforms. After successful exploratory and pilot phases, the project was due to be fully implemented across Mexico in 2021. Mexico and the OECD are exploring the possibility of extending the initiative to other countries and economies in the Latin America and Caribbean region, such as Chile, Colombia, Peru, and Costa Rica.

Further reading: OECD (n.d.[6]), Initiative NiñaSTEM Pueden (STEM, Girls Can), (accessed on 28 July 2021).

Mexico’s Secretariat of Public Education launched the Learning at Home (Aprende en Casa) programme during school closures in 2020 to provide pedagogical continuity across Mexico’s large and diverse education system. Learning is primarily delivered through audio-visual content broadcast using a pre-existing educational television network. The objective is to transmit the content to students in rural areas, many of whom do not have Internet access at home. The programme also involves radio content aimed at students from Indigenous communities and available in 15 different languages. In addition, it offers teacher training in digital skills in collaboration with universities, technology firms, and non-profit organisations. Aprende en Casa also worked alongside technology firms and television and radio companies to develop content and improve coverage across the country. In spite of these efforts, a study published in August 2020 points to a need to reinforce Mexico’s digital inclusion strategy, estimating that about 31% of students did not have sufficient access to the technologies they needed to participate in distance education (Fernandez and De la Rosa, 2020[7]). A parent survey carried out in October 2020 showed that 75% of parents have remained in contact with school staff during school closures, but only 16% have observed that the teacher has provided feedback to their children (OECD, 2021[8]).

Further reading: Florencia Ripani, M. and A. Zucchetti (2020[9]), xico: Aprende en Casa (Learning at home), OECD Publishing,


Fernandez and De la Rosa (2020), Ante la precaria inclusión digital, ¿aprender en casa? [In the face of precarious digital inclusion, learning at home?], (accessed on 5 May 2021). [7]

Florencia Ripani, M. and A. Zucchetti (2020), Mexico: Aprende en Casa (Learning at home), OECD Publishing, [9]

OECD (2021), The State of School Education: One Year into the COVID Pandemic, OECD Publishing, Paris, [8]

OECD (2020), Learning remotely when schools close: How well are students and schools prepared? Insights from PISA, OECD Publishing, Paris, [2]

OECD (2020), TALIS 2018 Results (Volume II): Teachers and School Leaders as Valued Professionals, TALIS, OECD Publishing, Paris, [1]

OECD (2019), PISA 2018 Results (Volume II): Where All Students Can Succeed, PISA, OECD Publishing, Paris, [4]

OECD (2019), PISA 2018 Results (Volume III): What School Life Means for Students’ Lives, PISA, OECD Publishing, Paris, [5]

OECD (2019), TALIS 2018 Results (Volume I): Teachers and School Leaders as Lifelong Learners, TALIS, OECD Publishing, Paris, [3]

OECD (n.d.), Initiative NiñaSTEM Can, (accessed on 28 July 2021). [6]

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