In today’s global economy, countries need high-quality education systems that will teach their citizens the skills necessary to meet the challenges of tomorrow. This series of videos, produced jointly by the OECD and the Pearson Foundation, highlights initiatives being taken by education authorities around the world to help school students do better.
The school systems featured were chosen for their strong performance in the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). Every three years, PISA evaluates the skills of 15-year-old secondary students in three basic areas: reading, mathematics and science. Pencil-and-paper tests assess how well they analyze problems, seek solutions and communicate ideas. Around half a million students participated in the latest round, carried out in 2009 in some 70 countries and economies.
Starting from very different levels, a number of countries and regions have succeeded over the last few years in raising their students’ performance substantially. They display some important common features. Their politicians and social leaders share with parents, teachers and students a strong belief in the value of education. Resources are channeled to the areas where they will provide the greatest results. All students are given opportunities to achieve success.
The best systems deliver strong and equitable learning outcomes across widely varying cultural and economic contexts. By showing what they achieve, the PISA tests provide a mirror to all countries and demonstrate what is possible. Others can learn from those that do well. The purpose of these videos is to transmit ideas and stimulate debate.
Creating and Nurturing a Laboratory of Innovation and Best Practices
In a decentralized system dogged by uneven teacher quality, poor infrastructure and low student commitment, Brazil is using benchmarking to identify problems and drive reform.
Using ICT to make a successful education system even better
Building on the successes of its fast-developing ICT sector, Korea is using digital technology to stimulate a creative approach to learning that gives students access to education materials wherever and whenever they want.
Reorganizing the school network to provide better facilities and new opportunities
Faced with widespread underperformance and inequalities of opportunity and outcomes, Portugal is reorganizing and modernizing its school network, grouping schools in 'clusters' that offer better facilities for all.
This publication focuses on how Japan is reforming its education system not only to produce better learning outcomes, but to equip students with the skills they need to navigate through the unpredictable labour market of the future and to participate in society as active citizens.
The future of Greece’s well-being will depend on improving educational performance to boost productivity and improve social outcomes. In the current economic context, with the need to get best value for spending, Greece must and can address inefficiencies in its education system.
US President Obama has launched one of the world’s most ambitious education reform agendas. Under the heading “Race to the Top”, this agenda encourages US states to adopt internationally benchmarked standards and assessments that prepare students for success in college and the workplace: recruit, develop, reward, and retain effective teachers and principals; build data systems that measure student success; and inform teachers and principals about how they can improve their practices and turn around their lowest-performing schools.