Morocco seeks to improve education with OECD support

Morocco has seen significant improvement in several areas of education, although there is still some way to go
Fachada de un colegio en Marruecos - PHOTO/ATALAYAR
Façade of a school in Morocco - PHOTO/ATALAYAR
  1. OECD report: improvement, but with gaps to close
  2. OECD guidelines for improvement

Morocco has made progress in one of the country's most important social sectors. Education is one of the areas of greatest concern to Aziz Akhannouch's government, and one that, at the same time, has the most room for improvement. However, this margin has been decreasing thanks to Morocco's efforts to improve access to education, achieve universal primary education and increase enrolment in lower and upper secondary education.

OECD report: improvement, but with gaps to close

Morocco has experienced growth in several of the most important sectors of education, but much work remains to be done. This is reflected in the latest report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which examines the policies and practices of self-evaluation, monitoring and external support for schools in Morocco, and how these can help the Alawi kingdom achieve the government's strategic objectives.

Colegio español Juan Ramón Jiménez en Casablanca - PHOTO/ATALAYAR
Juan Ramón Jiménez Spanish School in Casablanca - PHOTO/ATALAYAR

One of the key problems in this sector is the gap between students in rural and urban schools. The OECD report notes that the difference in performance is striking, with Moroccan 15-year-old students in rural regions below the OECD average. However, the trend suggests that this could change as the OECD itself has praised Morocco's efforts to turn the situation around.

OECD guidelines for improvement

Morocco has shown its commitment to further improving its educational institutions, as it has been doing in recent years. The idea is to focus on the schools themselves and make them central actors, thus improving the country's educational standards. In addition, a strong emphasis is placed on "establishing a framework for school self-evaluation and performance monitoring".

Colegio en Marruecos - PHOTO/ATALAYAR
School in Morocco - PHOTO/ATALAYAR

And it does so because the aim is to integrate a range of good practices and learning methodologies. At least that is the idea in the short term. Looking further ahead, Morocco wants to promote a system of self-evaluation and improvement planning. The intention is that it can also serve "as a basis for pedagogical audits and inspections if they evolve into more structured reviews focusing on the quality of learning and teaching practices in schools".

To this end, the OECD has drawn up guidelines that Rabat will take into account in order to improve its position in the OECD report. They urge the Moroccan authorities to strengthen "pedagogical leadership" capacities, as well as to carry out a more detailed monitoring of schools in order to see the failures of each one and thus be able to continue improving.

Self-assessment and performance monitoring of school progress would make it possible to compare schools by displaying "key indicators through dashboards". Through these, it would be the schools themselves who would evaluate their progress, while at the same time serving as a comparison with other schools with similar characteristics, also enabling a communication channel for reciprocal help.