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California parents dream of college while dreading the cost, survey shows

The majority of California parents want their children to get a college degree, even as they worry about the rising cost of college, according to a new survey from the Public Policy Institute of California

Most California parents hope that their child will earn at least a four-year college degree, with four in ten hoping their child will obtain a graduate degree. Parents with higher education levels have higher aspirations for their children’s educational achievement. Parents with lower incomes and lower educational credentials are the most concerned about escalating college costs. 

Nearly all parents with college degrees hope their child will obtain at least a four-year degree, including 58% who hope their child will earn a graduate degree. Nearly half of parents with some college (49%) and fewer parents with a high school education only (31%) hope their child will get a graduate degree.

Expectations rise with incomes as parents making $60,000 or more annually are far more likely than those with lower incomes to hope their child will earn a four-year degree or a graduate degree.

Fewer than two in ten hope their child’s highest level of education will be a two-year community college degree or career technical training.