Poll Finds Large Majority of Americans Want Federal Action on High School Reform

Education 07.16,10

A national opinion poll released yesterday showed that the majority of voters believe the nation’s public high schools are in urgent need of improvement that should be addressed when the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), the nation’s primary federal education law, is reauthorized.

Seventy-three percent of respondents say that improving public high schools is urgent and 78 percent say that it is important that Congress makes changes to the ESEA that will improve high schools.

The poll of likely voters was commissioned by the Alliance for Excellent Education.

The ESEA, enacted in 1965, is the main federal education law that provides K-12 funding to the states. It was last reauthorized in 2002 as No Child Left Behind (NCLB). The Leadership Conference has long supported the goals of ESEA and has urged Congress to reauthorize and strengthen the law, while maintaining accountability for all students and doing more to help raise standards, improve schools, and support teachers.