Ways to Improve the U.S. Education System

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Although the United States is one of the most highly industrialized nations in the world, students in many other industrialized nations are outperforming U.S. students in various academic areas. As a result, the U.S. has implemented standard-based reform, and its educational costs have soared. No longer are American graduates competing with each other for jobs, in the present global economy, they also are competing with graduates from other industrialized nations, many of whom are preforming at higher academic levels in reading, math, science, and problem solving as measured by their performance on the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) (“FactSheet”1-2). The PISA is an assessment that is administered every three years to fifteen year old students in OECD (Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development) countries. The OECD consists of the world’s highly industrialized nations that comprise more than 85% of the world’s economy. (West 2) The PISA was first administered in 2000, and it has been administered every three years since that time. This assessment measures student performance in the areas of reading, mathematics and science. The 2003 and 2012 administrations of the PISA also measured students’ problem solving. On the 2009 administration of the PISA, U.S. students preformed below average in the academic areas of math and science compared to students in other OECD countries (West 2). In math, the U.S. trailed seventeen OECD countries and

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