Rabat – Morocco English proficiency has dropped drastically. Falling from the 35th position to the 60th, the 2017 English Proficiency Index said that the mastery of the English in Morocco is “very low.”
At the continental level, the country performed mediocrely, ranking below South Africa, Nigeria, and Tunisia respectively but ahead of Egypt, Angola, Cameroon, Algeria and Libya.
“Despite the tremendous progress made over the last 20 years to increase equal access to education throughout Africa, access to preschool and secondary education remains scarce in many parts of the continent,” said the index.
The findings of the index seem to contend with a study by the World Economic Forum (WEF), which revealed that Morocco has the best proficiency in English as a second language in the MENA region.
The region, however, scored very poorly compared to other regions. The study, which was published on November 15, showed that the “poorest performing region is the Middle East and North Africa where all but two nations – Morocco and the United Arab Emirates are rated very low.”
The Proficiency Index found that Moroccan women outscored men by 1.82 points, mimicking the trend in Africa.
“Girls are more likely to finish lower secondary education in these two countries. Indeed, the gender gap in English proficiency is more pronounced in Africa than in any other region, and women far outnumber men,” found the index.
The previous Minister of Education and Vocational Training in Morocco, Rachid Belmokhtar, said in 2016 that the ministry had taken serious measures to expand and improve the use of the English language among students in the kingdom.
The aim of this initiative was “to improve the level of pupils in the country’s newly adopted second foreign language of English.”
The minister also proudly pointed out the “good” level of English exhibited by students who participated in COP22 in Marrakech.