US students are 31st in math, 23rd in science, 17th in reading. Bad news right? Not so fast says Ben Wildavsky

The latest testings results from the Program for International Student Assessment, show Americans are nowhere near the top in education, when compared to the rest of the world. American high school students finished 31st out of 65 economic regions in math, 23rd in science, and 17th in reading. How did our biggest global rivals do? Students from Shanghai finished at the top in all three subjects. Are American children falling behind?

Ben Wildavsky, author of The Great Brain Race: How Global Universities are Reshaping the World, appeared on The Takeaway on WNYC this morning to discuss these findings and what they mean for American students. Have a listen below.


  1. John Velluci says:

    This is a good article about the future of children and the state of American’s high school. It’s related and a good read if you’re interested in this topic

  2. What a complicated topic! Education seems to be a key factor in the development of China, so they are paying a lot of attention to their schools and universities.
    I am from Argentina, and we have free education, even for colleage degrees, but the system is inefficient and very expensive for the society as a whole, the main difference is that low-resource people have access to higher levels of education.

    The good thing about this kind of international tests is that at least you can have some idea of where are you standing compared to other countries.


    Eng. Germán Prieto.