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Survey Finds College and Career Readiness a Priority

A recent survey indicates that parents, teachers, and business executives broadly agree that all high school graduates should be college and career ready. However, responses vary when participants were asked to describe the priority of preparing college- and career-ready students.

The survey, MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Preparing Students for College and Careers, was completed by 1,000 public school teachers (grades 6 to 12), 2,002 public school students (grades 6-12), 580 parents of public school students (grades 6 to 12), and 301 business executives from Fortune 1000 companies.

College- and Career-Ready Students:

Most parents, teachers, and business leaders report that preparing college- and career-ready high school graduates should be a priority. About half of teachers and half of business executives consider this the highest priority, while a much larger percentage of parents (73 percent) rate producing college- and career-ready graduates as the highest priority in education.

Further, 84 percent of students and 77 percent of business executives state that attaining some level of postsecondary education is a necessary step to provide students with future career opportunities.

Skills for Future Success:

The majority of English and math teachers surveyed believe that clear and persuasive writing skills benefit students more than advanced knowledge of math or science. Almost all of the business executives agree that critical thinking, problem-solving and writing skills are the most essential skills for high school graduates.

About 64 percent of teachers, parents, and executives find international issues and knowledge about other cultures to be absolutely essential knowledge for college- and career-ready students.

The survey also included questions about attending college, paying for college, and education reform efforts. MetLife’s report concluded that preparing college- and career-ready students appears to be a priority for various stakeholders, but opinions vary on how to attain this goal and whether or not it should be an expectation for all students.

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