BBC: by Sean Coughlan —
The UK is in second place among European countries and sixth overall in a global education league table.
South Korea is top, with three other Asian countries and Finland making up the top five, in rankings from education and publishing firm, Pearson.
The rankings include higher education as well as international school tests – which boosted the UK’s position.
Pearson chief executive John Fallon highlighted the economic importance of improving education and skills.
These latest international comparisons, compiled for Pearson by the Economist Intelligence Unit, emphasise the success of Asian education systems, with South Korea, Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong in China rated as the highest performing.
But it shows a strong performance from the UK, which is ranked sixth, behind only Finland in Europe and ahead of countries such as Germany, France and the United States.
Finns no longer flying
Finland, which was previously in first place, has slumped to fifth, and there has been a wider downward trend for a number of Scandinavian countries.
It also records the rise of Poland, which has been hailed for reforming its post-Communist education system and sits in the top 10.