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Education in the United States of

America is provided in public, private, and

home schools. State governments set overall

educational standards, often mandate

standardized tests for K–12 public school

systems and supervise, usually through a

board of regents, state colleges, and

universities. The bulk of the $1.3 trillion in

funding comes from state and local

governments, with federal funding accounting

for only about $200 billion.

Private schools are generally free to determine

their own curriculum and staffing policies,

with voluntary accreditation available through

independent regional accreditation

authorities, although some state regulation

can apply.

In 2013, about 87% of school-age children

(those below higher education) attended

state funded public schools,

about 10% attended tuition- and foundation-

funded private schools,

and roughly 3% were home-schooled...

By state law, education is compulsory over an

age range starting between five and eight and

ending somewhere between ages sixteen and

eighteen, depending on the state.

This requirement can be satisfied in public

schools, state-certified private schools, or an

approved home school program.

In most schools, compulsory education is

divided into three

levels: elementary school, middle or junior

high school, and high school.

Children are usually divided by age

groups into grades, ranging from kindergarten

(5 to 6-year-olds) and first grade (6 to 7-year-

olds) for the youngest children, up to twelfth

grade (17 to 18-year-olds) as the final year of

high school.

There is also a large number and wide variety

of publicly and privately administered colleges

and universities throughout the country.

Post-secondary education is divided into

college,

as the first tertiary degree, and graduate

school.

Higher education includes extremely wealthy

and selective universities, public research

universities, private liberal arts colleges,

historically black colleges and universities,

community colleges, for-profit colleges, and

many other kinds and combinations of

institutions.

College enrollment rates in the United States

have increased over the long term.

At the same time, student loan debt has also

risen to $1.5 trillion.

According to a 2016 report published by the

U.S. News & World Report, of the top ten

colleges and universities in the world, eight

are American (the other two are Oxford and

Cambridge, in the United Kingdom).

The United States spends more per student on

education than any other country.

In 2014, the Pearson/Economist Intelligence

Unit rated U.S. education as 14th best in the

world.

The Programme for International Student

Assessment coordinated by the OECD

currently ranks the overall knowledge and

skills of American 15-year-olds as 31st in the

world in reading literacy, mathematics, and

science

with the average American student scoring

487.7, compared with the OECD average of

493.

In 2014, the country spent 6.2 percent of its

GDP on all levels of education –

1.0 percentage points above the OECD

average of 5.2 percent. In 2017,

46.4 percent of Americans aged 25 to 64

attained some form of post-secondary

education.

48 percent of Americans aged 25 to 34

attained some form of tertiary education,

about 4 percent above the OECD average of

44 percent. 35 percent of Americans aged 25

and over have achieved a bachelor's degree

or higher.

The United States ranks 3rd from the bottom

among OECD nations in terms of its poverty

gap,

and 4th from the bottom in terms of poverty

rate....