While there are many challenges facing our education system, it is clearly very positive that a major international survey has placed Northern Ireland pupils among the world's top performers in reading.
We Irish, unionist and nationalist are living in interesting times. The Brexit debacle has reinvigorated the drive for national unity and at the same time shaken the confidence of die hard Angloids who only take their heads out of the sand long enough to deny the obvious.
At the end of a week which has seen considerable mudslinging in the direction of the Irish government, the taoiseach yesterday received a resounding declaration of support from European Council President Donald Tusk, who pledged the backing of the EU over the border issue.
Donald Trump's latest Twitter outburst, retweeting anti-Muslim videos from the far right Britain First organisation and then attacking Theresa May, not only shows how unsuited he is to the responsibilities of his office but also offers encouragement to those promoting an agenda of hate.