While American education policy has mostly been conducted at the local level, recent reform efforts have been enacted at the federal level. These reforms, however, have been conducted in ‘isolation’ and with minimal consideration for international evaluations like the OECD’s PISA studies, writes Dr. Kerstin Martens, AICGS Visiting Fellow in fall 2010. Why are such reforms carried out independently of international studies? Dr. Martens examines this issue in her essay.