Indiana’s education leaders are trying to untangle a paradox: In a period when the state’s unemployment rate has only recently escaped double digits, businesses are reporting a talent shortage. The education roundtable is a panel that helps chart state education policy. Economist Graham Toft, with Growth Economics, says the state has done all the right things to improve its business climate, but still lags behind the nation in its number of residents with college degrees, while high school performance is simply treading water.
If Indiana’s lagging educational performance has created an undertow on the state’s income growth, though, Toft says one piece of the solution is to strengthen the connection between the state’s businesses and its universities.
With Toft’s suggestions in mind, the Education Roundtable has commissioned a study to predict what skills today’s second-graders will need when they graduate from college, and to suggest ways to ensure they have those skills. The study is due in September.