“Indonesian Kids Don’t Know How Stupid They Are,” Says American

children in indonesia

From Detik:

PISA Lists Indonesia At The Bottom, Foreigner: Indonesian Kids Don’t Know How Stupid They Are

The Programmme for International Student Assessment (PISA) under the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) issued a survey back in 2012 which ranked Indonesia at the bottom out of 65 countries for mathematics, reading and science skills. A foreign citizen who has been living in Indonesia responded to the survey by writing an article on her blog titled “Indonesian kids do not know how stupid they are”.

Elizabeth Pisani is an American-born foreigner, epidemiologist, and former journalist who wrote that article at the indonesiaetc.com and portraitindonesia.com sites. She expressed her concern about Indonesia regarding the PISA survey.

elizabeth pisani in ted forum

Detikcom has also discussed this survey last December 2013. It was stated that Indonesian students’ math skills were ranked last with a score of 375. Only less than 1 percent of Indonesian students have good ability in mathematics. In the field for reading skill, Indonesia got a score of 396 and a score of 382 in science. These scores are considered very low.

“it worries me that Indonesian children do not even realise how badly the school system is failing them,” Elizabeth wrote in her review.

Elizabeth mentioned that the majority of Indonesian children, especially those who are 15 years old do not possess the basic skills required in today’s modern society. “They think they’re all set for the future,” she added.

Elizabeth stated that 95 percent of Indonesian children are very sure that the things they study will help them in preparation for future jobs. Most think that schools are helping them prepare for their future. Only a few students think that school is a waste of time.

kids are happiest in indonesia

Comments from Kaskus:


The [Indonesian] education system is so bad… that’s why students’ way of thinking are constrained.


The education system is designed for students to be future cheap labor or consumers… that’s why it’s sufficient.


Hahaha… This is what happens when teaching positions are offered way too easily!


Well, not only are Indonesian kids stupid, but its ministers too… What would you do with fast internet anyway? This question actually was asked by our minister of information and communication, guys!


Indonesia’s education curriculum is based on rote memorization… This is what I did back in elementary school. =(


Gosh, how can our children compete with others from our neighboring countries? =(


The classroom environment isn’t encouraging since the teacher is always assumed to be right. Students should be allowed to have a debate with their teachers.


Indonesian education is only after good GRADES but not lifelong skills to survive in the REAL world!


The students are actually smart…. but only when they’re talking nonsense. Haha


The education system in Indonesia teaches students to be robots and not human beings who enjoy learning knowledge.


They do not need to be smart, as long they can be successful!

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