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Many people agree that there are problems with our education system. The big question is - what do we do about it? It's the question we're asking in our series "Improving Utah Schools." We'll look at the world of ideas for creating better education for our kids and ask what can be done to make those ideas a reality.Image by Derek Baird/Creative Commons via flickr

The Smartest Kids in the World


A new survey ranked American schools 26th in math skills among 34 developed countries. That's below average, and we just managed average in science and reading. Over the last fifty years, US scores have stagnated, while schools in Europe and Asia have made big strides.  So what are they doing that we aren't? Journalist Amanda Ripley wanted to answer that question, so she followed three American students for a year abroad. She joins Doug to explain why she says we should be asking more of our kids. 

Amanda Ripley is a journalist who has written for Time magazine and The Atlantic. Her new book is called The Smartest Kids in the World: And How They Got That Way. [ Indiebound | Amazon ]

For more information on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), click here. Try your hand at sample questions here.