Education Olympics 2008: The Games in Review

This report has a simple aim: to present results from international assessments so readers can judge for themselves how American students stack up globally.  It shows how the U.S. has performed internationally in education in recent years, and it provides a glimpse of how education looks in several top-performing nations.

Unsurprisingly, the tale this report tells is not a comforting one. Americans accustomed to seeing the United States at the top of international rankings tables will not like what they see. And although the strengths of the U.S. economy and its higher-education system offer some hope for the future, the state of the K-12 education system depicted in the pages ahead should spark concerns about the long-term outlook for the U.S. economy.