'Shocking!' Poll Shows American Parents Give K-12 Education Failing Grades

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The COVID-19 pandemic was a bad thing. Lives and livelihoods were lost. But there was one very good and ongoing positive thing that came out of that awful number of years: Because of school lockdowns and virtual learning, American parents got an up close and personal view into what was going on in their children’s classrooms. They did not like what they saw one bit. And now, a new poll is illustrating that point in a big way. The recent Gallup survey found that just 36 percent of U.S. adults, presumably parents, are satisfied with the quality of K-12 education in the United States. The last time satisfaction in American schools was this low was in 2000. The poll was conducted from Aug. 1-31 and surveyed 1,014 U.S. adults. 

Because most parents gauge their satisfaction based on their own children’s education, there was one bright spot. One-third of parents were satisfied with teacher performance. Of those surveyed, 36 percent of parents rated their child’s teachers as “excellent,” and 37 percent said their child’s teacher was “good.” But when the numbers were broken down by party affiliation, that’s where things got predictable. Only 38 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents said they were “completely satisfied” with the educational system, and 36 percent said they were “somewhat dissatisfied.” Democrats and Democrat-leaning independents had a slightly different view. Of those surveyed, 12 percent said they were “completely satisfied,” and 43 percent said they were “somewhat dissatisfied.” Among Republicans, the most significant drop in satisfaction was between 2020 and 2021, when satisfaction rates dropped 14 points from 49 to 35 percent.

Just one question here: Are educators in America actually shocked by these numbers?! What did they think was going to happen when parents saw things like critical race theory and gender ideology being taught to, in some cases, kindergartners and elementary school-age kids? Additionally, once schools did reopen, some parents may have taken a trip through the school library and been shocked again to discover that their children were essentially being encouraged to read pornography. 

Since being allowed back into the classroom for in-person learning, things have not gotten much better. The transgender agenda is being pushed on kids more than ever. Some schools, and even entire school districts, are “transitioning” kids from their birth gender without parental knowledge or consent. Once boys have transitioned into girls, they are allowed to compete with girls on athletic teams, which includes biological boys sharing locker and changing rooms with biological females. 

Teachers’ unions are a big part of why American parents think the education system is a nightmare. The National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers are the nation’s largest teachers’ unions. Combined, they have a membership of roughly 4.5 million. Because they are allies of the Democrat Party, donating large amounts to mostly Democrat candidates, they are fully on board with the liberal Democrat agenda, and that is undoubtedly showing up in the nation’s classrooms.    

But parents have seen what is happening in places like Virginia and are fighting back, even in blue areas like Washington State. Shelly Clark is a county GOP precinct committee officer in Spokane Valley. Her husband is the president of the Central Valley School District Board. She explains what is taking place all over the country, saying, “This is all a part of a bigger movement to take over local elections. It’s part of a nationwide trend of retaliation against mask mandates and other policies.”

What have parents gotten for attending school board meetings to voice their dissatisfaction with what their kids are being taught? In 2021, the National School Board Association sent a letter to the Justice Department, asking that they investigate parents who attended school board meetings as “domestic terrorists.” They have since apologized, but the damage has been done. 

Top it all off with math and reading scores for 13-year-olds falling nine points and four points, respectively, below pre-pandemic levels from the 2019-2020 school year, and it is no wonder that America’s parents see a system that is failing their kids. 

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