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Проблемы со вступительными экзаменами в Университете Либерии - Entrance Exams Cause Problems at University of LiberiaEntrance examinations have been causing problems at the University of Liberia in Monrovia. The exams help to decide whom the university will accept as a student. The trouble began after an education specialist, James Dorbor Jallah, was named to direct and administer the testing. Recently, about 25,000 high school students took the test, but failed. Mr. Dorbor Jallah says he and his team want to show that a fair examination can be held. He says some Liberians think they cannot enter the university unless they make a financial gift in return. He said the university has been trying to decide how to oversee the process so that people's abilities would be measured on the basis of their performance on the examinations. Last year, the University of Liberia accepted about 7,000 new students after they took a similar exam. But that test was judged differently. Mr. Dorbor Jallah says the university sought his help because it had problems in the past with entrance exams. The country's minister of education says she does not think that all the students failed the test. Some of the students have held protests at the university. They say they were cheated out of more than $20, which was required to register for the test. It appeared that the university would have no first-year students until Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf met with university officials. The officials then said they would lower admission test requirements and accept at least 1,600 people. Mr. Dorbor Jallah says the most recent test results were based on raw scores. A raw score does not take in account how well individuals perform within a group of students. For VOA Learning English, I'm Carolyn Presutti.
Преподаватели, студенты вспоминают китайскую "Культурную Революцию" - Teachers, Students Recall China's Cultural RevolutionAlmost 40 years have passed since Chinese Communist leader Mao Zedong died and his Cultural Revolution ended. Changes in Chinese life caused widespread suffering during the Cultural Revolution. In recent times, some aging teachers and student leaders who lived through this period in Chinese history have been telling their stories. One of the first such stories published in China told of an apology from a student to a teacher. The apology gained attention in the West since appearing in China in 2010. The teacher was Chen Bi, now 90 years old and retired. She worked at the Beijing Foreign Language School during the Cultural Revolution. Today, Shen Xiaoke is a 60-year-old lawyer. He was a teenage student at Chen Bi's school in 1966. In August of that year, school was suspended. Political indoctrination was extreme. Mao incited people to denounce teachers, intellectuals and others in important positions. Students influenced by his speeches turned against Chen Bi. Chen Bi recalls the period with horror. She says, "For us who were persecuted, it was a nightmare." Shen Xiaoke says he heard many students argue among themselves about who was the most revolutionary. People tried to prove they were revolutionaries by hurting other people. Chen Bi said if students did not strike others, they would be accused of opposing the Cultural Revolution. So people who were normally not aggressive would start hitting victims.Three years ago, Shen Xiaoke decided to face the past. "We need to apologize to our teachers," he says. He wrote Chen Bi an apology letter. He expressed his regrets for himself and for others in his class. For VOA Learning English, I'm Alex Villarreal.
Обучение детей музыкальным способностям - Teaching Children the Power of MusicKid Pan Alley is a nonprofit organization that holds songwriting workshops for students across the United States. The organization recently visited a school in the Anacostia area of Washington. The children presented a concert with the help of songwriter and recording artist Paul Reisler. He established Kid Pan Alley in 1999. Since then he has worked with more than 35,000 students and produced more than 2,200 songs. He says the power of music can teach children skills they might not learn in school. He believes the American educational system is focused too much on standardized tests designed to measure knowledge. But Paul Reisler says we now live in a creative economy. He says his group is trying to inspire children to be creative. At Orr Elementary School in Anacostia, 95 percent of students come from poor families. Marlon Ray is the school's dean of students. He says some of the children have difficult lives. But, he says, these kids still want to strive for greatness.Jhonna Turner is director of programs at the school. She says the fourth- and fifth-grade students are often focused on more than school. Some have to help their families, or live in homeless shelters. A shooting took place in April directly in front of the school. No one was injured, but the incident affected the whole community. Students are often influenced by what happens around them. Still, Orr Elementary School has a positive, hopeful atmosphere. Marlon Ray says the workshop and concert made possible by Kid Pan Alley created good memories that will last for years. For VOA Learning English, I'm Laurel Bowman.
Большинство неграмотного женщин живёт в Западной Африке - Majority of World's Illiterate Women Live in West AfricaA United Nations agency estimates that 516 million of the world's women cannot read and write. The UN Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, says programs are needed to help illiterate women learn although they are past school age. Women make up two-thirds of all illiterate adults. The majority of these women live in West Africa. Many girls in that area never go to school. But in Liberia, a new education program is giving women in their 30s, 40s and 50s another chance to learn to read and write. Pauline Rose heads UNESCO's worldwide monitoring report on Education for All. She says being illiterate causes huge problems in daily life. She notes situations like not being able to read directions on a medicine bottle or the number on a bus. Ms. Rose says illiteracy affects not only the women but also their families, because women are often the main caregivers of children. She says, when women are illiterate, they are less likely to use health services. Some countries, like Senegal, have improved women's literacy rates through government efforts. They tell more girls in primary school and community programs about the importance of education. But there are still many nations where less than one in four women can read and write. They include Niger, Benin, Mali and Burkina Faso. Ms. Rose says these countries need literacy programs that target women. Liberia, for example, has launched a second-chance literacy campaign to teach women. Liberia's Ministry of Education says 5,000 women currently study in adult literacy programs across the country. For VOA Learning English, I'm Alex Villarreal.
Проверьте во всемирной цифровой библиотеке - Check Out the World Digital LibraryImagine you are a student in Mexico. And your teacher asks you to write a report about the country's ancient Aztec civilization. You now can do your own research on the subject through the World Digital Library, or WDL. One of the 8,000 items listed on this website is the General History of the Things of New Spain. It was written in the 16th century by a member of a Roman Catholic religious order. Friar Bernardino Sahagun lived in what is now Mexico. He liked many qualities of the Aztecs and wrote 13 books about them in Spanish and Nahuatl, the Aztec language. The books are stored in Florence, Italy. But you can read every page and see every picture with the World Digital Library. The library has at least one item from every member country of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO. UNESCO and the U.S. Library of Congress launched the WDL in 2009. Since then, more than 25 million people have visited part of the collection. The library provides free access to thousands of objects of cultural and historical importance.The library is looking for information about Arabic and Islamic science, says Musa Murawih. He is a WDL researcher who works on all of the library's documents in Arabic. Arab countries and their libraries are strong supporters of the World Digital Library. Mr. Murawih says the library shows the United States as a partner with Arab countries in an area other than military or security matters.The library also is helping countries make electronic copies of their documents, so that they are available to computer users around the world.For VOA Learning English, I'm Carolyn Presutti.
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