Many teenagers find lessons boring and irrelevant - and say the education system should be changed to suit their needs.
Eight out of 10 said they were fed up with school and almost half said there were not enough courses to choose from, which limited their options in later life.
The conclusions were made in a study by Edge, a charity promoting practical courses as an alternative to academic study.
It follows a report from Ofsted last year which suggested boring lessons could be blame for high truancy rates at some schools.
The latest study called on the Government to eliminate an "academic bias" in schools to ensure teenagers had more vocational alternatives.
Andy Powell, Edge's chief executive, said: "Young people are clear in their condemnation of the current education system.
"It's often dull, uninspiring and irrelevant to the world of work. It has to change and ensure there are many high-quality paths to success available.
"The current school system, with its corrosive divide between academic and vocational learning, reflects a social attitude which views 'know-how' as inferior to 'know what'. This attitude is failing children and the UK economy.
"We have to eliminate the current academic bias. We need more high-quality vocational options with high-class facilities and specialist teachers."
The poll of 1,000 students aged 14 to 19 found that three-quarters thought the current education system needed to be undergo radical reform. Some 43 per cent said they found school boring or irrelevant.
More than half of pupils in their final year of compulsory education said they were worried that school failed to do enough to prepare them for the world of work.
The study marked the launch of the charity's Six Steps To Change manifesto, outlining its vision for the future of British schools.
Schools Minister Jim Knight said: "We are in the process of making some of the biggest changes to secondary education in decades, in direct response to evidence such as this that young people are not sufficiently engaged by their education.
"This year we introduced a new, flexible, less prescriptive secondary curriculum that allows teachers more freedom to make lessons more relevant and interesting.
"The new diploma qualification, combines theoretical study with practical experience and prepares young people for both higher education and the world of work. Early evidence shows that the diploma is proving very popular with the young people who have chosen them." By Graeme Paton Last Updated: 4:09PM GMT 20 Jan 2009