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WASHINGTON (AP) — Young people give mediocre marks to America's high schools but put great faith in its colleges.
A new Associated Press-Viacom poll suggests most high schools are failing to give students a solid footing for the working world or strong guidance toward college, at a time when many students fear graduation means tumbling into an economic black hole.
Most of the 18- to 24-year-olds surveyed gave high schools low grades for things that would ease the way to college: A majority say their school wasn't good at helping them choose a field of study, aiding them in finding the right college or vocational school or assisting them in coming up with ways to pay for more schooling.
If schools did these things better, it could make a significant difference, because young people already are enthusiastic about higher education. Two-thirds say students should aim for college, even if they aren't sure yet what career they want to pursue. Almost as many say they want to get at least a four-year degree themselves.
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