I was reading Jeremy Harmer's book (how to teach), and i encountered the sentence "it is, therefore, especially important that they are both fully engaged with what is going on and also ready to listen". But isn't that a subjunctive? Shouldn't it be "it is important that they "be" engaged..."? He's such a renowned author, I don't think he would make such mistakes, but this is kind of confusing.
I have lived in the UK for thirty years and have definitely seen the subjunctive decline in the past twenty in newspapers and magazines, making it, I suppose, one more victim of the internet. But, regardless of custom, it is not CORRECT to use "are." You have to distinguish between what ought to be and what is, and "are" means that something exists. We have the subjunctive for a reason, and it is a good reason. It's not the subjunctive's problem that ignorant and tin-eared people don't understand it.
The question was anwered in the comments, in the sense that "are" is OK.
@WS2: Ngrams seems to show that the subjunctive is dying in both places but that it's much closer to expiring in the U.K. This definitely varies by region of the U.S. (Probably also in the U.K.) The link is too large to fit in this comment, so see my next one. – Peter Shor Nov 11 '18 at 14:58
Ngram supporting the previous comment. – Peter Shor Nov 11 '18 at 14:59