The calls for high school reform come most loudly from people who are concerned about lagging math and science performance in the United States.
They say high school students should take more, and more rigorous, math and science courses to become better prepared for a high-tech world. They also want a more diverse population of students to pursue math and science careers -- including women and people of color.
Two employees at Boston Scientific can attest to that need, through their own experiences.
Greg Benz is a marketing product manager for Boston Scientific. It's his job to look at the market for new medical devices and figure out who are Boston Scientific's customers of the future.
Benz has traveled extensively for work and pleasure. He's visited more than 40 countries so far. He says in many of those countries, there is enormous interest in math and science education. MPR's Lorna Benson spoke with Benz about his observations.
Susan Trahan is director of portfolio management for Boston Scientific. Her job is to figure out the best ways to spend her company's research and development budget -- to invest in the types of technologies she thinks the market wants.
Trahan says when she graduated from Michigan Technological University in 1987 with a degree in mechanical engineering, only about 20 percent of her class was female and she had no female instructors.
Trahan says she was encouraged to pursue her engineering career because math and science careers were highly valued in her community. Lorna Benson spoke Trahan about her career.