We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Cambridge does science, Oxford graduates lefties. Harvard, sure, why not. But I'd be just as happy if they were taxed, their thirty billion dollar endowment is a threat to the future of the US and needs to be knocked down.
The secret goes beyond Oxbrigde, take for instance the London School of Economics, University of London.
The real secret is that in these schools the professors/lecturers are not able to prepare the tests. The School, London School of Economics and Political Science, teaches the students but the University, University of London, tests the students.
The teaching staff no longer has the ability to test to their whim, and must teach the course not to their whim. The result is these teachers may be able to slant the material but they cannot completely alter it and teach what they want.
In the US, the teacher does the testing and they test on what they want. They can teach to their bias, test to their bias and pass student on without knowing the underlying actual material.
The US needs to 1. Convert to a 3 year degree program, and 2. Disconnect the teaching and testing. This will alter most of the faults within our current system.
The real benefit is that such a system would allow the tutoring system to flourish here, where high quality, online, video lectures could be used by good tutors to maximize the education while reducing costs. Testing could be done by outside agencies as the SAT is done, allowing the system to become more objective. Real education would be reintroduced and the system would become accepted once again by employers.