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Many Top Texas Schools Don't Quite Make the International Grade

Bill Zeeble

Some highly ranked Texas school districts aren’t so great when compared to school systems in 25 industrialized countries.

That’s the news from the second annual Global Report Card, from the George W. Bush Institute. Doctor Jay Greene, Professor of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas, co-authored the research. He says even some wealthy suburban school districts are mediocre on the international stage.

"This is disguised a little bit for us  by fact that state accountability systems encourage suburbanites to compare themselves to the kids in big cities. And by that comparison, the suburbs look pretty good. But when you compare the suburbs to students in other countries, then  they often don’t look as impressive."

For example, Greene says 59 percent of Lewisville ISD students do as well or better than the world’s students in math. But in Texas,  he says 93 percent pass math. Greene says it’s time more parents get involved in schools, to reform and improve them. 

Bill Zeeble has been a full-time reporter at KERA since 1992, covering everything from medicine to the Mavericks and education to environmental issues.