The importance of reading

Portuguese pupils “cannot understand long texts/ abstract concepts or distinguish fact from opinion” as they used to

Potentially a combination of the months in which education was affected first by the pandemic, and then by teachers’ strikes, plus the propensity these days for young people to use devices, rather than read a book, has resulted in PISA – the international pupils evaluation programme – reporting that Portuguese pupils are less able to interpret regular texts than they were in 2018. Just 5% of the almost 7,000 pupils tested were able to successfully understand a long text, deal with an abstract concept and/ or distinguish a fact from an opinion. PISA has sought to blame the situation on lack of stimulation to read at home, admitting also that the kind of literature promoted in schools “does not captivate children”.