This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
In Pennsylvania, attempts to change education policies or practices are often long, drawn-out slogs.
So what would it take to revolutionize the entire system to compete with top performers in the world?
A new report from the National Council of State Legislatures, a bipartisan think tank, suggests a clear path forward, urging lawmakers to fast-track international best practices in order to improve the United States’ mediocre standings on the world’s education stage.
"What surprised me and, I think, them, the most was the consensus that came on some very fundamental principles that have played out very differently in the states," said Julie Bell, the group’s program director for education policy.
Bell helped write the report with 22 state lawmakers from across the country, evenly split between Democrats and Republicans.
So what’s the magic formula?
The group found a few commonalities of success, specifically highlighting Finland, Singapore, and Ontario, Canada.