PDK students

U.S. public wants more life skills for students

Vouchers, standardized testing have fallen out of favor in a new poll.

The American public wants more than academic quality from its local public schools–career skills classes, licensing and certificate programs, and technology and engineering classes are increasingly identified as important for today’s students in a new public opinion survey.

The public also wants educators to find ways to help students develop their interpersonal skills and limit standardized tests.

These findings are just part of the latest edition of the annual Phi Delta Kappa International (PDK) Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools, the defining public opinion survey on American public education for the past 49 years.

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The poll also reveals that parents value racial/ethnic and economic diversity in their schools, although most aren’t willing to undertake a longer commute to reach schools that would provide that for their children.

(Next page: How the public feels about leading policy trends)

Laura Ascione

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