One pandemic effect: Functional illiteracy deepened, dropout on the rise in Romania

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The Romanian education system is suffering, with the coronavirus pandemic only deepening the crisis, according to an analysis conducted by Save the Children Romania. The functional illiteracy has deepened since the COVID-19 crisis, while the dropout has increased. Many pupils cannot adapt to the new learning methods or they have no access to them at all, so some are dropping school for good.

Romania tops the ranking on school dropout. 15.2% of youngsters aged from 18 to 24 have concluded only eight grades or less. The percentage is on the rise, although Romania pledged in 2010 to reach a dropout of 11.3% in 2020.

Roughly 45,000 children are dropping school on an annual basis.

Moreover, the Romanian education is behind the European rankings, as the results of the Romanian pupils at the international tests are lower.

Assessments revealed that over 40% of the Romanian children have difficulties in making basic mathematic calculations, while the general knowledge on society, people and universe are very limited.

Among the Romanians pupils who have economic and social disadvantages, only one in 1,000 obtained top results in reading. 41% of the Romanian pupils are functional illiterates.

The coronavirus pandemic has made things worse. As more and more schools are closed, going just online, many children do not have the possibility of attending online classes. For 28 pc attending online courses is extremely difficult, either for they are forced to use their parents’ mobile phone, or because they do not have a proper Internt connection.

The situation is not easy for teachers, as well. 43% of them do not have the necessary material resources to teach online.

The risk of poverty or social exclusion is another major factor influencing the education of kids. 35.8% of the children from the disadvantaged families are exposed to this risk, with the percentage being higher in the countryside (44.3%).

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