The system needs reform, but the public likes teachers

September 16, 2014, 2:25 PM GMT+0

Most Americans have a low opinion of US education and think it needs to be reformed, but teachers are still well liked

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), an international body of industrialized countries, released a new report examining each country's education system last week. The report painted neither a particularly good nor bad picture of American education. The US spends a bit more than average on education to get a lower than average high school graduation rate. Many more Americans do end up at college compared to other countries, but this is changing fast.

YouGov's latest research shows that few Americans think that the US education system is particularly good. Only 14% say that it is 'excellent' or 'very good', while 39% think it is 'average'. 44% think it is 'not very good' or 'poor'. There is also overwhelming support for major reform of the educational system. Overall 62% of the public want 'major reform', including 56% of Democrats and 65% of Republicans while only 2% think that the system doesn't need any reform.

Despite this high support for reform, and the widespread sense that the US education system's performance is below average, support for public school teachers is high. Most Americans (59%), regardless of their demographic, think that most public school teachers in their state are good at their jobs. In fact, 75% of Americans say that they would be proud if their child became a teacher, while only 9% wouldn't be.

Full poll results can be found here.