Global test scores don't tell it all

  • Article by: Norman Matloff
  • Updated: December 10, 2013 - 5:37 PM

Each country has its own context, and in any case, high rankings aren’t the end-all.

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Douglind33Dec. 10, 13 6:30 PM

The US has always excelled in practical, intellectual achievement. The US

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Douglind33Dec. 10, 13 6:47 PM

The US has always excelled in practical, intellectual achievement. Our mastery of innovation and invention is second to none. Somehow, our education system produces the best. While many fall out along the way, the opportunity to lead and succeed is still our heritage. Having spent my career in technology and worked around the world, I have seen this first hand. We have imitators, copyright thieves abound and a]the global economy doesn't respect intellectual property. None-the-less, our place in front is still acknowledged. Let's work for more of the same.

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wplettfanDec. 10, 13 8:12 PM

The funny thing is, while the American public wants us to be more like Asia when it comes to education, in Asia they want to be more like us.

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ciamanDec. 10, 13 8:24 PM

While I do not know if I believe any numbers coming out from California anymore, I do know that America is the number one innovator in the world! But we do have many problems with our minorites and young people dropping out of just bout everything.

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grant55Dec. 10, 13 9:43 PM

What a pathetic article to excuse the failure of our public schools. Home schooled children without the benefit of a full-time "professional" teacher outperform their peers in every category and yet somehow it's a context issue when competing against other nations? Blame the overwhelming power of the NEA in holding teachers accountable for their failures. School vouchers and competition is our nation's only hope in improving our education system.

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martytoilDec. 10, 13 9:49 PM

The people that want to dig deep and truly understand the data, find out how good our education system is.

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luzhishenDec. 10, 1311:35 PM

Our educational system is better than ever! Sure, our economy is dependent on stuff engineered and manufactured overseas, but we got plenty o' football and basketball. Our reality TV is unmatched anywhere on the globe. What's the problem?

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arspartzDec. 10, 1311:54 PM

This gives a huge benefit to those who can devote themselves to full-time, year-round practice. By contrast, most top U.S. computer-science students have better things to do with their time, including founding start-ups that might become billion-dollar companies.

The foreign students are also taking a more focused curriculum. They are not wasting their time and money earning credit in archery and liberal arts.

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comment229Dec. 11, 13 4:27 AM

"in Asian countries, even impoverished students tend to be highly motivated in school. Sadly, this isn’t the case for the long-neglected U.S. underclass." This IS the most intelligent statement I have read concerning the plight of American education in the last 20 years. The first step in problem solving is to identify the problem, and like one comment mistakenly pointed out, it is NOT the schools, the teachers, the system etc. Our kids and their friends got a great education in public schools, had great caring teachers, and took advantage of everything they could while in school from dance to athletics. Now, I suggest the one naysayer in the comment section go ask about 10 drop outs why they did drop out and if you get an honest answer, come back and tell us.... For the past 20 plus years, we have tried to fix American education with programs from the top. How's that been working out for you? Had enough of NCLB? Some people even are saying we need to "double down" on the program because it is not working. They live in a bubble and need a reality check. America has thrived on diversity; not funneling students into a static assembly line process to produce test scores.

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comment229Dec. 11, 13 4:32 AM

PS... Require every school to have the same approach, same curriculum, same teaching methodology? Sorry, but how would like it if every cancer research facility in America had to follow this approach.... all your eggs in one basket, one size fits all panty hose..... you get the idea. It doesn't work.... The only test we took all the way through school was the ITBS and that told teachers, parents, and students everything they needed to know about a student's strengths and weaknesses comparing their progress, to themselves, from year to year. You want better educational results in America? Ask a bunch of drop outs why they dropped out; fix that; IF YOU CAN (IF YOU DARE!)... but you will find out it has little to do with our schools and much to do with our society. I'll quit now.... could write a book on this one.

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