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Americans have deep disagreements on education issues like pandemic mask wearing in school, critical race theory, what’s taught in the classroom and other hot-button topics. But despite these profound disparities in thought, two new polls suggest parents and young adults agree on a core set of opinions about K-12 and postsecondary education.

These nationally representative surveys were conducted by American Compass and YouGov and involved 1,000 parents with children ages 12 to 30 and 1,000 young adults ages 18 to 30.

In short, while parents in many polls think their kids’ schools are fine, both groups in these new studies are critical of the overall performance of the education American students are receiving. And rather than affirming the often heard “college for all” mantra, both groups support creating more pathways and practical programs that prepare young people to lead decent lives after their schooling is finished.

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