What Students Are Saying

Article excerpt

Each year the Horatio Alger Association, a nonprofit organization that aims to motivate U.S. students through its various educational projects, publishes "The State of Our Nation's Youth"--a report about students' goals, school experiences and thoughts about the world around them. More than 1,300 students ages 14-18 completed surveys and were included in the 1999-2000 report. Here are several items that may be of particular interest to career and technical educators. To view the entire report, go to www.horatioalger.com.

Achieving Personal Success

Here are the percentages of students who "agree" or "strongly agree" that the following are important to personal success.

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Plans After High School

The total percent of students planning to attend a four-year college or university after high school dropped 3 percent (from 61 percent in 1998). The two-year college option rose 2 percent this year, and the vocational-technical school option dropped 1 percent.

                                       Total   Male   Female
Attend a four-year college
or university                          58%     54%    62%
 Attend a two-year college             16%     16%    16%
Attend a vocational-technical school   10%     13%    7%
 Get a job                             29%     29%    29%
Get married                            8%      5%     11%
 Join the armed forces                 8%      12%    4%
Join a volunteer organization          2%      1%     4%
 Travel                                9%      8%     10%
Undecided                              13%     15%    12%

Report Cards for Schools

Students were asked to give their schools a letter grade for overall performance.

A   17%
B   49%
C   26%
D    6%
F    2%

Starting Salary Expectations

Here is a breakdown of how much students said they expect to earn when they begin a career.

                   Total   Male   Female

Under $15,000      8%      7%     8%
$15,000-$24,999    24%     22%    26%
$25. …