Where does the American education system stand in comparison to the world? There is a spoonful we can take from all successful countries and create our own perfect concoction. City-states like Singapore and education systems in highly performing places like Hong Kong and Shanghai have unique characteristics that set them apart from countries like Australia, England and the USA.
One of the major predictors of educational success worldwide is the educational level of the parents.
The primary, secondary and higher education levels are exemplary in their approach and work. The teacher morale is also high because their pay is acceptable, working conditions are favorable, facilities are good and there are all kinds of opportunities for teachers to improve their practice.
These include streaming children based on their capabilities, and high-risk, competitive tests and examinations. By contrast, South Korean students in secondary school can be at their desks for 14 to 16 hours. Still other countries that struggle with poverty have limited access to education and a lower literacy rate among their citizens.
School does not begin for children until they are 7 years old. Student retention is a common practice. Parents are very involved and are willing to spend a lot of money to get their child the education they need.
To assume that all we need to do in Australia to improve test results is to reduce the influence of the Australian Education Union, while being attractive to some, is both undemocratic and guilty of assuming cause and effect.
US education scholar Henry Braun has noted : Delegations from lagging jurisdictions have been routinely dispatched to such destinations as Finland, Singapore and Ontario to ferret out the secrets of their success.