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Why we shouldn’t take the Pisa out of the rankings

Politicians’ obsession with international rankings is unhealthy – but the truth is, we can actually learn a few things from the ‘superpowers’, says one educationalist

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You’d be forgiven for thinking that the media attention given to the Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa) test results every three years is a lot of fuss about nothing. I can’t tell you (and probably don’t need to) how frustrating it has been to hear various politicians waxing lyrical about “Singapore this” and “Finland that” over the past few years, when some of the policies they are justifying bear little relation to what is happening internationally and what research suggests is effective.

When I decided to go and work in schools in some of these “education superpowers” to ...

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