Business leaders weigh in on education

Business leaders weigh in on education

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SALT LAKE CITY - The head of all Texas schools recently made waves by calling on Texas businesses not to hire high school dropouts. The hope is they'll go back to school.

The Salt Lake Chamber says it would never support a hiring ban on high school dropouts. But at the same time, spokesman Marty Carpenter says there's no more critical long-term issue for Utah than education.

"It benefits our state. It gives us a vibrant economy now and in the future, and it also provides us with a healthier state. It's just better all around if people are going to school, staying in school, getting educated -- then we have a better workforce," he said.

Carpenter says the chamber's board of directors recently voted education its No. 2 priority for the upcoming year, only behind economic stimulus.

"What we want to do is take a long-term approach and set some attainable goals," he said.

Carpenter says prepare to see business leaders become more involved in education, like they have in health care and other issues.

Utah has an 88 percent high school graduation rate. Texas is also 88 percent but another estimate has it at 70 percent, which led to a lot of criticism.


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Mary Richards


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