"Too many American children receive an inferior education because too many U.S. schools and school systems are dysfunctional or ineffective. This situation is most dire for our neediest children, who lack high-quality education options, receive dumbed-down curricula and weak instruction, and whose school systems are too often held hostage by adult interest groups, including but not limited to teacher unions. Nor are affluent youngsters getting the education they require to succeed. As a result, U.S. students trail our international competitors and many are ill-prepared for college and career. Particularly galling is that these problems remain even though we spend more money per pupil than almost every other country.
"In order for young Americans to succeed in college and the workforce, to participate knowledgeably in our democracy, and for our nation to maintain its leadership, prosperity, and security in the world, these problems must be solved. While the U.S. has made modest progress in some areas since being declared a “nation at risk,” we have a long way to go to create an education system worthy of our great country."