Americans express strong support for classes that give students career skills and favor the idea of certificate or licensing programs that can help qualify students for jobs, according to the 2017 PDK Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools.
While more than three-quarters of the respondents see advanced academic classes as a mark of a good school, less than half — 42% — say scores on standardized tests are a reliable indicator of school quality.
Over half of the respondents said they are against vouchers, and over half also agree with the statement that having a racially and ethnically mixed school is important.
The PDK poll has been conducted annually since 1969. One notable finding is that 15% of respondents give their local schools an A, an increase of six percentage points in 2007. As in past years, Americans are feel more positive about their community’s schools than schools overall, with 49% giving local schools an A or a B and 24% giving schools nationally those grades.
In other findings, 82% of respondents said that it is extremely or very important for schools to teach interpersonal skills, and 71% felt the same way about art and music classes.
The survey results are based on a random sample of 1,588 adults from all 50 states who answered a telephone poll in English or Spanish in May.