Behning: New study reveals ways to boost student achievement

Posted by: Samantha Holifield  | Tuesday, August 9, 2016 12:06 pm

STATEHOUSE (Aug. 9, 2016) — A closer look at how top-performing countries prepare students to compete in today’s global economy provides valuable insight for U.S. schools, according to a new study by the National Council of State Legislatures. 

According to State Rep. Bob Behning (R-Indianapolis), the findings released Tuesday by NCSL of an 18-month long study of world-class education systems are both instructive and deserve the serious consideration of education policymakers. Behning served on the bipartisan International Education Study Group tasked with identifying ways U.S. schools could better prepare students to compete in the 21st century economy. 

“While many international policies are not feasible in the states, we found important commonalties between top-performing countries in terms of both education policy and practices,” said Behning, chair of the House Committee on Education. “Combined with best practices found within the U.S., these valuable lessons can be borrowed and adapted to fit our schools’ unique needs as we aim to give our students the best chance at success.” 

Behning said commonalities between top-performing education systems included support for struggling students, a professionalized teaching corps, highly effective career and technical education programs, high standards, early education opportunities, and clear workforce and education options.

“One question addressed in this study is how we can keep educators in the classroom teaching, while giving them the opportunity to professionally advance further in their careers. Implementing career ladders is one way we can do this,” Behning said.

Behning plans to meet with school superintendents and educators throughout the state to share the results and receive feedback. He will also continue to serve on the NCSL study group through 2017 to further explore best practices. 

“We’ve made great progress in Indiana, particularly with our choice scholarship program,” Behning said. “A lot of work has been invested in this study, and now policymakers, educators and school officials have many innovative solutions to help bridge the skills gap and better prepare students to compete in a global economy.”

The report titled, “No Time to Lose: How to Build a World-Class Education System State by State,” is a result of work by the NCSL International Education Study Group, a bipartisan group of state legislators and legislative staff representing 26 states. To learn more about this study, visit


State Rep. Bob Behning (R-Indianapolis) represents portions of Hendricks and Marion counties. 

A high-resolution photo of Behning can be downloaded by clicking here