Americans rank “building character” above bolstering the economy when asked to name the most important long-term goals of K-12 education, according to a new poll.
A survey of 6,400 voters, conducted by the advocacy group 50CAN, found that twice as many respondents chose character-building as those who chose “a healthy economy.” Respondents also ranked building character above building independence and leadership, creating a lifelong love of learning, providing equal opportunities, helping people become good citizens, and providing “self-fulfillment.”
50CAN is funded by such groups as Google, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation. (The Gates and Walton foundations have also provided support for news coverage in Education Week.)
A version of this article appeared in the February 26, 2014 edition of Education Week as Character-Building Beats Out Economy-Building as Goal