From classroom trends to school board decisions, Class Act will keep you updated on all the school issues followed by the Star Tribune’s education reporters. Contributors include Steve Brandt, who covers Minneapolis; Kim McGuire, who covers the west metro; Erin Adler, who covers the south metro; Anthony Lonetree and Libor Jany, who cover St. Paul and the east metro, and Paul Levy and Shannon Prather, who cover the north metro.

Math and science achievement study has good news for Minnesota

Posted by: Updated: September 3, 2013 - 4:33 PM

On this sunny first day of school in many Minnesota districts, here's a reason to be optimistic about young Minnesotans' learning potential.

The latest Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study, which surveyed the knowledge of more than 600,000 fourth- and eighth-graders around the world, turned up some surprising good news for Minnesota and even for the United States as a whole, according to an article in today's New York Times' ScienceTimes section.

The study, which used 2011 data, the most recent available, looked at achievement in 63 nations, also including data from many U.S. states, which it treated as if they were countries. Here are the study's top 10 science and math achievers:

Singapore, Massachusetts, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, MINNESOTA, Finland, Slovenia, Colorado and Russia.

The United States as a nation placed 17th in the list, after the above list and then after Russia, Hong Kong, England, Indiana, Connecticut, North Carolina and Florida. Every entity in this list was well above average in math and science scores.

The New York Times story focused on Massachusetts, whose gains reflected improvement across both affluent and poorer districts.

For the full story, go to:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/03/science/expecting-the-best-yields-results-in-massachusetts.html

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