we would certainly not educate them in the US public school system. I doubt I'd even trust most private schools in the US, coming from a European country with much higher educational standards. We've seriously considered that'd we'd move to Europe for 10-15 years just so our child wouldn't have to suffer through the US school system.
This caught my attention... What have you been reading, and to whom have you been listening? Exactly how bad do you think the US schools are?
I don't think our system is perfect, and I admit that I have no experience with the European system, but you make it sound as if we achieve basic levels of literacy despite
our schooling (and against long odds).
From age 5 through 13, I attended public school in a small (10k people), solidly middle-class town (median family income of $68k). Then I went to a public high school in a nearby city (100k people, median income of $50k). I'm sure we could have used more supplies, smaller class sizes, better teachers, etc. But things were fine, really.
Those of us from the wealthier towns/neighborhoods who had more involved parents, were doing calculus, physics, and two years of chemistry taught by PhD's. Lots of us went on to study at universities, with scholarships, normally regarded as more prestigious than those in Europe.
Those kids who came from the poorer, inner-city, broken families often did not do so well. The dropout rate at my high school was roughly 35%. But even some of the kids from less advantageous backgrounds found success.
I think the results of standardized tests of American vs. European kids do not tell this story. The problem is not teachers or money or school systems. It seems to me that it's about parents
being involved, holding their kids accountable, exercising discipline, and fostering ambition or pride. For some reason or another, Europeans seem to do a better job of that. It's the same reason, I guess, that Switzerland has far fewer gun deaths than the United States despite a similar rate of gun ownership. The problem isn't the guns, it's the culture.
In any case, if you are a decent parent I think your child will do perfectly fine in the American public school system - and in life.