PH slides to 27th place in global English proficiency rankings

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 20) – The Philippines suffered a seven-spot drop in this year's English Proficiency Index released this week by international education company Education First.

Despite placing 27th in this year's list, the Filipinos have been given a "high proficiency" rating with a score of 562 out of 700. The EPI was based on the results of English tests administered by Education First to 2.2 million adults from 100 countries and territories in 2019.

Education First described the "high proficiency" band of English language as those countries which can make a presentation at work, understand TV shows, and read a newspaper.

The Philippines also holds the second highest English proficiency in Asia, behind Southeast Asian neighbor Singapore which finished 10th in the list.

For the past four years, the country has been declining in the EF English Proficiency Index. It was placed in the 13th spot in 2016, 15th spot in 2017, 14th spot in 2018, and 20th spot in 2019.

During the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the Philippines ranked the lowest in reading comprehension among 79 countries with an average reading score of 340.

The global survey showed that one in four students is unable to complete even the most basic reading tasks, which OECD said could mean they may struggle in their lives while living in a digital world.