b'FEATURED ARTICLETrends impacting students today and their futureIn a time of rising complexity, it is more important than ever to understand students educational experience and desires for the future. McCrindles Education Future Report focuses on the student perspective, having surveyed Australian students aged 16 to 24 to inform these insights.A holistic view to understanding todays students and the external trends that are shaping their world, equips leaders with greater clarity and confidence for making informed decisions.Growing population of children despite extended COVID-impactIn a world where the impact of a global pandemic is fittingly as wide as the globe itself, demography is no exception. In the next ten years, the population growth of Australia is estimated to be 1.1 million smaller than it would have been in the absence of COVID-19 (with Australia projected to grow from 25.8 million currently to 28.8 million by 2031). However, we will see an increase of at least 156,700 children under the age of 18, comprised of Generation Z and Generation Alpha. This places an increasing demand on Australias education sector, not only to keep pace with population growth, but also to support the shifting priorities that Australians are placing on education. In order to market school services to this growing cohort of students, it is essential to know where these students are and how to best reach them.A values-driven generationTodays students are ambitious and values-driven. Their top hopes for their future include wanting to own their own home (72%), having financial freedom and independence (67%) and excelling in their career (67%).The future of education 2020 - McCrindle ResearchThis is followed by living a sustainable lifestyle (51%) and working in an organisation that aligns with their valuesStudents appreciate their education(45%). One of their greatest fears is being stuck in a jobPositively, students appreciate their education, with more that they dont enjoy or find fulfilment in (61%). This comesthan nine in ten (94%) agreeing they greatly value having just after not having enough money to live comfortablyaccess to an Australian education. The important role and (65%). More than half fear not reaching their full potentialinfluence of teachers does not go unnoticed with seven (54%) or not making a difference with their life (41%). in ten students (70%) strongly/somewhat agreeing they can think of at least one teacher who has made a massive positive difference to their life.NOVEMBER 2021 33'