Mexico vs U.S. Education Systems

After looking at a presentation (link below) on comparing the Mexican school system to the United State’s education, I came across some interesting and surprising findings. To begin, the Mexico education system has mandatory preschool called “Jardín de los Niños”. This is for children aged 3–5 with average class size of 35–50. Children are not allowed to enter primary school without a certificate of completion of Jardín de los Niños. This first difference between our schooling and this mandatory preschool shows me that Mexico sees the necessity of starting education sooner than 5 or 6 years old. Although many children in the United States may attend PreK, this is more concentrated toward the upper class families because lower income families cannot afford private PreK fees.

Another difference between Mexico schools and United State’s is that in Mexico, during their recess time, they have “brunch” which is similar to our snack. But they do not have any designated eating areas for the kids- no lunch tables. Also, they have no adult supervision at recess time. This means that students must resolves any issues on their own. This difference is more heart breaking to me than anything. It is sad to hear that schools do not have the resources to accommodate students with a proper recess time that is safe and healthy for the child. To me, the whole point of recess is to get the student out of the classroom and active, to socialize with other kids, and become rejuvenated for more learning. In Mexico it seems the students do not have the minimum resources to make this happen.

High School, unlike Preschool, is not mandatory in Mexico. Most Preparatorias are found in rural areas and are 3 years long. They are to prepare you for a 4 year University. Now that I know High School is not mandatory in Mexico, I find it backwards to have Preschool mandatory. In the United States we put a lot of emphasis on High School as finishing your education. It is also to prepare you for college, but at the basic level it is to complete the foundation of education. In Mexico, it is literally called preparation school, to prepare you for University. There is some good in this that I think the United States can learn from. I think there needs to be more of a focus on preparing students for college in high school. There should be better aid in studying for college entrance exams, filling out college applications, and researching schools. It turns out there are strengths and weaknesses in the education systems in both Mexico and the United States.