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HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS ARE PESSIMISTIC ABOUT THE FUTURE, BUT BELIEVE LEADERSHIP CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE

 HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS ARE PESSIMISTIC ABOUT THE FUTURE,
 BUT BELIEVE LEADERSHIP CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
 NEW YORK, March 3 /PRNewswire/ -- America's high school students feel more troubled about the country's future and more disenfranchised from the political process than their younger peers, but believe the President can make a difference in their lives. These findings were among the key results of the first Scholastic Poll of American Youth, conducted by Chilton Research Services, the national marketing-research firm.
 "We should view this poll as a warning sign," said Dr. Ernest Fleishman, Scholastic Inc.'s director of education. "In the 1996 Presidential election, these young people will be old enough to vote for the first time. But we have to address their concerns and engage them in the political process today if we want them to become voters four years from now."
 -- 64 percent of high school students feel that life in America 10 years from now will be worse than it is today. Only 17 percent feel that life will get better.
 -- High schoolers listed the economy and unemployment (61 percent) as the issue that worries them the most. Also leading the list of their concerns are AIDS (42 percent) and drugs (37 percent).
 -- Only 17 percent of high schoolers think that elected officials care about them.
 -- Only 12 percent feel that the best-qualified people run for President.
 -- A large majority (72 percent) feel that it matters who is in the White House; 62 percent say they are "interested" in the 1992 election campaign.
 According to Dr. Fleishman, "Young people are looking for leadership; that's why so many are interested in this year's campaign. They care deeply about the future, are realistic about the serious problems we face, and want very much to be part of the solution. It's our responsibility, as adults, to show them the way."
 The Scholastic Poll of American Youth was conducted on Feb. 20 and Feb. 21. Findings were based on 2,861 interviews with students in grades 3-12, of which 1,016 were in grades 9-12, chosen through a random probability sample of students in 150 public, private, and parochial schools across the U.S. The results have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus four percentage points.
 Scholastic Inc. is one of the nation's leading publishers and distributors of children's books, classroom and professional magazines, and other educational materials. The company also publishes educational software and produces family-oriented video and television programming. Scholastic Inc. operates in the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and New Zealand.
 For more information about the Scholastic Poll of American Youth, contact Gabrielle Myers at (212) 505-3403.
 -0- 3/3/92
 /CONTACT: Gabrielle Myers of Scholastic, 212-505-3403/ CO: Scholastic Inc. ST: New York IN: PUB SU:


TS-PS -- NY013 -- 4311 03/03/92 08:26 EST
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Date:Mar 3, 1992
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