Best Practices
December 15, 2008

Deloitte Releases its 2008 Business in Education Survey

On November 12th, 2008 the U.S. Chamber's National Chamber Foundation (NCF) hosted a CEO Leadership Series Luncheon featuring Barry Salzberg, Chief Executive Officer of Deloitte, LLP. Mr. Salzberg discussed the importance of promoting advanced education to ensure a competitive U.S. workforce and economy and what role, if any, should U.S. business have in this charge.

During the event, Mr. Salzberg unveiled the findings of Deloitte's 2008 Business in Education Survey, which strongly indicate the link between education and competitiveness. Findings suggested that while an overwhelming majority (81%) of academics and business executives believe the quality of the U.S. education system would improve if businesses took a more active role, the two audiences have opposing views on exactly how businesses can aid in the improvement process. A mere 12% of educators think that businesses involvement in curricula development would definitely provide improvement, compared to 41% of business executives. Similarly only 14% of educators say businesses should definitely help set national standards, versus 42% of executives who say so.

While academics and business leaders disagree on businesses' role in education, the two groups do see eye to eye when it comes to education's impact on the economy. Over 66% of all respondents believe that the competitiveness of the U.S. economy will continue to be seriously jeopardized if businesses do not take a more active role in improving the U.S. education system.

"Educators acknowledge the potential benefits of working more closely with businesses," stated Mr. Salzberg. "The challenge is to help improve our schools without impinging on the education process, compromising curricula or challenging the expertise of educators. I am confident that we can work effectively with parents and educators to identify the most effective ways businesses can help."