Kids today are a group of lazy underachievers who for the first time in history are actually doing less than their parental counterparts. Honestly, when you look at the statistics today's teens aren't just failing, they are doing so in a spectacular fashion. How bad is it? According to a recently released national report, it's getting harder each and every day to get today's teens to do more as they seem to be spending all of their time and energy doing LESS!
For instance, kids today smoke less than we did. They get pregnant less than we did. They binge drink less than we did. They watch less TV, don't fight as much, and don't do nearly as much meth. Maybe they're too distracted by their phones. Maybe they are a smarter generation. Maybe they're spending all their time building billion dollar startups. Or maybe they're just sort of boring. Whatever it is, these are slow times at Ridgemont High, and it's getting harder and harder to find Jeff Spicoli compared to twenty-five year ago.
We know this because every two years the federal government asks more than ten thousand teenagers dozens of questions about their behavior. For the past twenty-five years the government has been conducting a study called Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey to inquire about all sorts of bad behaviors that range from drug use to fighting at school.
Most of the survey questions show that today's teenagers are among the best-behaved on record. They are, comparatively, a mild-mannered bunch who will probably be early for curfew and remind YOU to lock the door as they head upstairs to floss before going to bed (oral hygiene is important you know). This is different from what adults typically expect. In fact, polls show that we generally think teens' behavior is getting worse when the exact opposite is happening.
So while the adults continue to argue over how to best reform our nation's schools, it might be important to know that these kids, well, they're all right.
It's us over-achievers we have to worry about!