The World Bank apologized to the Philippines concerning the education report it “inadvertently published” on its website.
“We deeply regret that the report on education was inadvertently published earlier than scheduled and before the Department of Education had enough chance to provide inputs,” the World Bank said in a statement.
“This was an oversight on our part, and we conveyed our personal apologies in our communication with the government.”
The international financial institution added it temporarily removed the report from the website.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones earlier demanded the World Bank to apologize, saying the report was based on old data and the institution did not give the Philippine government a heads-up about the report.
“We would like the public to be aware of this, and since the country was insulted [and] was shamed, we expect and look forward to a public apology,” Briones said at a Palace news conference.
Last week, World Bank reported that 80% of Filipino schoolchildren fell below the minimum proficiency levels.
World Bank apologizes to PH over education report
The report was based its conclusion on the Philippines’ scores in the 2018 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), the 2019 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), and the 2019 Southeast Asia Primary Learning Metrics (SEA-PLM).
Last year, Grade 4 students from the Philippines scored lowest among 58 countries who took the international assessment for mathematics and science, the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study 2019 (TIMSS) reported.
Students from the Philippines only got 297 in mathematics and 249 in science, which are “significantly lower” than any other country that participated in the tests.
“We are aware of the Department’s various efforts and programs to address the challenge of education quality,” the Washington-based multilateral lender said.
“We agree with the Department (of Education) that the issue of quality has a long historical context, and support its demonstrated commitment to resolve it decisively.”
It also said that they have reached out to Secretary Briones aimed at “continuing our dialogue with the Department of Education on the opportunities and challenges in the education sector.”