New Survey Reveals Character Improvements in American Youth

A recent survey of 23,000 high school students conducted by the Josephson Institute garnered front page attention from USA Today and news outlets across the country this week and revealed some encouraging news on the youth of America.

The 2012 Report Card on the Ethics of American Youth, which can be viewed here in full, found that high school students are lying, cheating and stealing less than they have in previous years.

Among the important findings:

  • The number of students who admitted they cheated on an exam within the past year dropped by 8 percent from 2010.
  • The number of students who said they lied to a teacher in the past year dropped by 6 percent from 2010.
  • The number of students who admitted they had stolen something from a store within the past year dropped by 7 percent from 2010.
  • 99 percent agree that “it is important for me to be a person with good character.”

“It’s a small ray of sunshine for our collective futures,” said Michael Josephson, president and CEO of the Josephson Institute. “But, the overall numbers of those who think that these behaviors are acceptable is still worrisome.”

It’s an important reminder to everyone involved in education. Great strides have been made to improve the character of our nation’s youth, but there’s still much work to be done.

Read what other news outlets are saying about the latest Report Card:

Photo credit: Mr_Stein