NZ kids among smartest but reading a concern
1:48PM Wednesday December 05, 2007
By Edward Gay

A large number of Kiwi 15-year-olds are struggling to reach the minimum reading level, despite New Zealand's fifth placed ranking in an OECD education report.

The study by The Programme for International Student Assessment looked at 57 countries world-wide.

Korea took out the highest percentage for students at the top level in reading, at 22 per cent, with New Zealand the next highest with 16 per cent.

But New Zealand's average reading score was bought down by having a large number of readers at the lower end of the scale. About 15 per cent of Kiwi kids scored at level one or below. As a comparison, only five per cent of Finland's 15-year-olds scored in the lower grouping.

Kiwi teens scored a respectable score in maths, with a ranking of 11th and performances consistently over the OECD average.

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