As education increasingly becomes a focus in the midterm election, a new Fox News registered voter survey finds 8 in 10 parents are concerned about what’s being taught in schools. The only issue that worries them more is inflation.  Additionally, most parents think there are problems within the school system, including book banning by school boards, parents not having enough say, too much focus on race, and transgender policies.

The new survey finds that out of 12 issues, what’s taught in schools ranks 5th among voters, with 72% concerned. Inflation (89%) and crime (79%) rank higher, while similar numbers are concerned about political divisions (74%) and Russia (73%).


Voters point to a set of problems within schools.  Book banning is seen as the largest issue (77% saying it’s a problem), followed by parents not having enough say in what’s being taught (64%), too much focus on race (60%), and overly accommodating transgender policies (60%).

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Fox News Poll from October 9-12 showing views on hot-button school subjects ahead of midterm elections. (Fox News)

For parents, what’s being taught in schools is the second-most important issue to them (79%).  Inflation is their only bigger concern (88%).

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Fox News poll gathered October 9-12 2022 on parents' concerns ahead of midterm election, with inflation ranking highest. (Fox News)

And what do parents think is the problem with school lessons?  For roughly 7 in 10, it’s book banning (73% a problem) and not having enough say (70%), while 6 in 10 say there is too much focus on race (61%) and transgender policies (60%).

Book banning midterm elections parental rights

Book banning is among the highest concern amongst parents ahead of midterm elections according to a Fox News poll conducted from October 9-12, 2022. (Fox News)

The findings are the same among self-identified Republicans: 87% are concerned about what’s being taught, with inflation being the only more pressing topic at 94%. 

Among Democrats, school curriculum lands in 10th place at 60% concerned, with climate change (85%), abortion policy (84%), and inflation (84%) landing the top spots.


Democrats (77%) and Republicans (78%) are equally likely to think book banning is a problem, while more Republicans than Democrats point to not having a say in what’s taught (83% a problem vs. 47%), transgender policies (83% vs. 36%), and too much focus on race (79% vs. 43%).

Traditionally, Democrats are seen as better able to handle education, but currently, the advantage is small, as voters give them a 3-point edge over Republicans on handling what’s taught in schools (47%-44%).  The split is the same among parents.

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A Fox News poll conducted October 9-12, 2022 shows that Democrats have a narrow margin over Republicans in parents' eyes for handling what is being taught in schools. (Fox News)

Moreover, voters extremely concerned about what’s being taught in schools prefer the Republican candidate over the Democratic candidate by 17 percentage points (52% vs. 35%) in the generic House ballot.


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A generic congressional ballot showing different demographics preferences for a Democrat or a Republican candidate ahead of 2022 midterm elections per a Fox News Poll conducted October 9-12. (Fox News)


Conducted October 9-12, 2022, under the joint direction of Beacon Research (D) and Shaw & Company Research (R), this Fox News Poll includes interviews with 1,206 registered voters nationwide who were randomly selected from a national voter file and spoke with live interviewers on both landlines and cellphones. The total sample has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.