State of the American Family: Parent Voters Believe the U.S. is on the Wrong Track & Warn of Trouble Ahead for Gen-A Children

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Parent voters want Biden to focus on the economy in 2023; Half of all parents say it will be harder for Generation A to get ahead financially compared to their own generation

Boston, MA— Ahead of the 2023 State of the Union Address, the National Parents Union surveyed registered voters who are parents of K-12 students nationwide about the “state of the American family”. Only 36% of parent voters believe the country is on the right track, 58% say it’s on the wrong track, and President Biden’s approval rating sits at 50% disapprove and 47% approve.

When asked which two issues they want President Biden and Congress to focus on in 2023, most parent voters (59%) cited the economy followed by crime/public safety (17%), K-12 education (16%), and immigration (16%).

Party Trust on the Issues

Issue Democratic Party Republican Party Unsure
Economy 39% 47% 14%
Crime & public safety 40% 44% 15%
K-12 education 46% 38% 16%
Immigration 41% 45% 13%
Environment 50% 30% 20%
Taxes 41% 42% 17%
Abortion 48% 35% 18%
Health care 49% 36% 15%


The Future of Gen-A

Often left out of the conversation around generational divide issues are children born between 2010-2020, better known as Generation A. Given their young age, it’s up to parents and caregivers to speak out on their behalf and ensure policymakers are making decisions in the best interests of this future generation of leaders. Here’s what our poll found:

  • Almost half (49%) of all parent voters say it will be harder for Generation A to get ahead financially compared to the parents’ own generations. Only 18% say it will be easier.
  • Despite the concern around getting ahead financially, parent voters are fairly confident that Generation A children will obtain jobs that allow them to be financially secure: 41% confident vs. 22% not confident
  • Parent voters are most worried about the cost of attending college for Generation A: 67% say it’s a big problem
  • The quality of the K-12 education their children are receiving right now is also a concern: 57% say it’s a big problem


“Damn right we’re worried about this country and what lies ahead for our children,” said Keri Rodrigues, President and Co-Founder of the National Parents Union. “The average American family is getting squeezed, we’re watching a mental health crisis unfold before our eyes, and significant barriers to a high-quality education, especially for underserved communities, remain in place. Parent voters have run out of patience for politicians that allow poisonous politics to interfere with delivering on their promise of solutions.”


What Do Parent Voters Want—By the Issues *

Education- What the federal government should do

  • 84% say the federal government should provide free lunch at school for all K-12 public school students
  • 79% want funding provided directly to families of public school students to help them pay for additional mental health support for their children (e.g., counseling outside of school)
  • 74% want the expanded Child Tax Credit reinstated to give eligible families monthly checks of $300 per child under age 6 and $250 per child age 6 or older 7


Crime—What elected officials should do in communities to address crime

  • Provide more access to mental health services: 51%
  • Invest in programs that provide positive activities for children and teens: 50%
  • Provide job training and rehabilitation for prisoners who want to choose a better path after serving their sentence: 47%
  • Have more police officers patrolling the streets: 39%


Healthcare—What Congress should do:

  • 70% of parent voters think it is the responsibility of the federal government to ensure all Americans have healthcare coverage
  • 87% of parent voters said pass a law to make health care prices more transparent to patients
  • 85% of parent voters said increase funding to expand access to mental health services
  • 84% of parents said require health insurance plans to cover mental health as they do physical health


Environment/Energy—Priorities for the government over the next five years:

  • 87% of parent voters said improving the availability and affordability of energy
  • 87% of parent voters said reducing pollution in oceans, rivers, and lakes
  • 79% of parent voters said reducing emissions that contribute to climate change

*For full results please click here for toplines


N=1,025 registered voters nationwide who are parents or guardians of K-12 students

Field Dates: January 24-25, 2023

Click Here for Toplines


The National Parents Union is a network of highly effective parent organizations and grassroots activists across the country that is united behind a set of common goals and principles to channel the power of parents. Our family advocates improve the quality of life for children across the United States and define the education conversation. Learn more at: