Find your next job fast at the Jan. 28 Virtual Career Fair. Register now.
Education

Children & Families

November 13, 2002 2 min read

Values Gaps

Parents say they are falling short when it comes to teaching their children “absolutely essential values,” concludes a recent survey from Public Agenda, a nonpartisan opinion-research organization.

A report on the findings, titled “A Lot Easier Said Than Done,” says that 83 percent of the parents polled said they believe it’s vital to teach their children to learn self-control and self-discipline.

Download a free copy of the report, “A Lot Easier Said Than Done: Parents Talk About Raising Children in Today’s America,” from Public Agenda, until Nov. 27, 2002 (Requires free registration). After that, the complete report will only be available in print for $10, plus $2 shipping and handling. Or read the special Web edition. (Downloading the full report requires Adobe’s Acrobat Reader.)

But only 34 percent said they believe they have succeeded in teaching their children those abilities.

The results also show that 82 percent of parents believe it’s “absolutely essential” to teach their children always to do their best in school, but only 50 percent of all respondents say they believe their children have learned that lesson.

The survey revealed other gaps.

For instance, 91 percent of the respondents think it is “absolutely essential” that their children be honest and truthful. But just over half the random sample of 1,607 parents or guardians—55 percent— said they had succeeded in teaching those values.

The telephone survey, conducted between July 31 and Aug. 15 by the New York City-based organization, polled parents of children ages 5 to 17. The survey has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

“Parents today are struggling very hard to raise respectful, responsible, well-behaved children and are remarkably frank in this survey in assessing their own kids’ shortcomings,” Deborah Wadsworth, the president of Public Agenda, said in a press release.

She added that parents clearly indicate how difficult it is to shield their children from the temptations and negative influences that are prevalent in society.

Ninety percent of the respondents said that the bad language and adult content that children see during prime-time television gets worse every year.

About half the parents surveyed—48 percent—said they worry that their children watch too much television. But the other 52 percent said excessive TV viewing wasn’t a problem in their households.

At least half those surveyed said they worry “a lot” about protecting their children from drugs and alcohol and about someone physically harming or kidnapping their children.

More than a third said they worry “a lot” about negative messages in the media, about paying bills and making ends meet, and about juggling the demands of work and family.

—Linda Jacobson ljacobson@epe.org

A version of this article appeared in the November 13, 2002 edition of Education Week

Events

Teaching Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table With Education Week: How Educators Can Respond to a Post-Truth Era
How do educators break through the noise of disinformation to teach lessons grounded in objective truth? Join to find out.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
The 4 Biggest Challenges of MTSS During Remote Learning: How Districts Are Adapting
Leaders share ways they have overcome the biggest obstacles of adapting a MTSS or RTI framework in a hybrid or remote learning environment.
Content provided by Panorama Education
Student Well-Being Online Summit Keeping Students and Teachers Motivated and Engaged
Join experts to learn how to address teacher morale, identify students with low engagement, and share what is working in remote learning.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Join us for our NBOE 2021 Winter Teacher Virtual Interview Fair!
Newark, New Jersey
Newark Public Schools
Special Education Teacher
Chicago, Illinois
JCFS Chicago
Assistant Director of Technical Solutions
Working from home
EdGems Math LLC

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: January 13, 2021
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Obituary In Memory of Michele Molnar, EdWeek Market Brief Writer and Editor
EdWeek Market Brief Associate Editor Michele Molnar, who was instrumental in launching the publication, succumbed to cancer.
5 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: December 9, 2020
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: Stories You May Have Missed
A collection of articles from the previous week that you may have missed.
8 min read