AP Poll: Americans support community colleges

By DORIE TURNER

Associated Press Writer

The vast majority of Americans feel it is better for some students to go to community college instead of a four-year school, according to a new poll by The Associated Press and Stanford University released Tuesday.

Respondents rated community colleges as excellent or good at nearly the same rate as four-year schools, showing Americans are generally pleased with two-year colleges. Seventy-one percent said it's sometimes better for students to pursue a diploma or certificate from a two-year school than aim to enter a four-year college.

"That's an important breakthrough," said Stanford researcher Michael Kirst. "But the results ought to be somewhat troubling to people who want to reform community colleges. If the public does not think there's a major problem with an institution, it's often difficult to mobilize the political will to change it."

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