Fourteen Percent of U.S. adults are illliterate
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Thread: Fourteen Percent of U.S. adults are illliterate

  1. #1
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    Fourteen Percent of U.S. adults are illliterate

    Yet another affirmation of the sorry state of American education.

    14 Percent of U.S. Adults Can't Read - Yahoo! News

    About 14 percent of U.S. adults won't be reading this article. Well, okay, most people won't read it, given all the words that are published these days to help us understand and navigate the increasingly complex world.

    But about 1 in 7 can't read it. They're illiterate.

    Statistics released by the U.S. Education Department this week show that some 32 million U.S. adults lack basic prose literacy skill. That means they can't read a newspaper or the instruction on a bottle of pills.

    The figures are for 2003, the latest year available. State and county results are available here.

    "The crisis of adult literacy is getting worse, and investment in education and support programs is critical," said David C. Harvey, president and CEO of ProLiteracy, in response to the finding.

    This is about jobs and the economy, Harvey said.

    "More than 1 million people lost their jobs in 2008 and the new unemployment figures are the highest in 16 years," Harvey said. "A large number of the unemployed are low-skilled individuals who struggle with everyday reading, writing and math tasks. The administration wants to create new jobs with the stimulus packages, but to take advantage of those new positions, these adults need basic literacy skills."

    A separate study released last month named Minneapolis and Seattle as the most literate cities.

    ProLiteracy, which promotes reading programs for the disadvantaged and encourages more government funding, estimates that illiteracy costs American businesses more than $60 billion each year in lost productivity and health and safety issues. Lack of funding at the federal, state and local levels prevents about 90 percent of the illiterate from getting help, the organization claims.

    ProLiteracy also estimates:

    * 63 percent of prison inmates can't read
    * 774 million people worldwide are illiterate
    * Two-thirds of the world's illiterate are women

    If parents can't read, there's a good chance children will be poor readers, the organization notes.
    Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.

    Benjamin Franklin

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  3. #2
    As far as I am concerned just one more in a vast number of reasons to home school.
    By faith Noah,being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear,prepared an ark to the saving of his house;by the which he condemned the world,and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith Heb.11:7

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by HK4U View Post
    As far as I am concerned just one more in a vast number of reasons to home school.
    I agree, as long as th e parents doing the home schooling aren't part of the fourteen percent who are illiterate.
    Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.

    Benjamin Franklin

  5. #4
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    I graduated high school in 2000. We had to take a basic skills test in 11th grade called the HSCT (this was before the much-feared FCAT in Florida) that basically made sure that we could do arithmetic, basic algebra and read some words. Nothing too intensive - and we got to use a calculator!

    Now I've never been too awesome in math, but I can easily do simple stuff with some paper. Getting a calculator is like showing up to a fistfight with a rifle. Unless you just don't know WTF you're doing, you can't lose. Stunningly, nearly 30% of my class failed the math portion of the HSCT, and about as many struck out on the language portion. I was bowled over that not only was I not as terrible at math as I thought, but there were people who apparently couldn't even count to 10.

    What do these people do with their time? Everything from getting gasoline to buying a bag of chips involves simple math. Even if you just smoke dope all day, don't you have to be able to figure out how many more blunts' worth you have left?
    Silent Running, by Mike and the Mechanics

  6. #5

    Skooling...

    Tat.. Thanks for this post. I have been trying to get back it all day. It's been one of those snow removal days...
    I graduated from school in the mid 60's and ran right to south east asia. I was amazed at how many guys were having trouble with basic skills back then. I now have a 14 yr old grandson that his report card looks fine, but give him some thing to read, he struggles badly with even the smallest words. It makes us wonder how his grades could be so good. The wiphe spends more time with him than I do, (My Bad) usualy a couple hours a week if he's here. I like having him read Bass Pro Catalogs, He LOVES to fish.. It does help to keep his interest in what he is reading.
    My Point is our schools are failing. The parents that are involved have the kids that seem to do better. We need to get back to the basics including penmanship! You can't read it... Period.. WE do not spend the time in school teaching basic skills.
    I think home schooling is great.. As long as the kids pass the same 11th grade tests the public school kids take. The test must be tougher... Period..
    I could go On... The systems broke... Fix it....
    Semper Fi

  7. #6
    wolfhunter Guest
    Ricbac- you're right. Kids should be able to pass an aptitude test/abilities demonstration before graduating. The F-CAT here in Florida has demonstrated a potential flaw. Some of the lazier teachers out there focus on teaching the students how to pass the F-CAT, not how to read, write, and add.

  8. #7
    I'm of the opinion we've tried to turn our public school system into more of a daycare provider than an educational institution. Discipline amongst kids is getting progressively worse and the ability of the school and teachers to discipline students or give them the boot encourages students to act like dumba$$e$. The dumba$$e$ only detract from the ability of the teacher to educate the willing. If there was no requirement to keep a troublesome student in school, maybe we could sort the wheat from the chaff a little earlier in the process to the benefit of those who go to school to get an education, not to kill 7 hours a day.

  9. #8
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    I don't think the schools are failing.... I think the gov't has made it almost impossible for the schools to discipline any student, and most parents aren't doing their job regarding discipline either. "Two parents working, and buy the kids what they want to keep 'em quiet" doesn't get it. It seems as if many parents just use the schools as a "baby sitter" for the kids. I know, sometimes parents (or a single parent) has a rough time of it, but the kids are paying the price, not to mention society. Anything one does requires discipline to do it well.... be it shooting, or growing up.
    Only when our arms are sufficient, without doubt, can we be certain, without doubt, that they will never be employed....... John F. Kennedy
    Life Member NRA Life Member Marine Corps League

  10. #9
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    Yeh, I'm sure they know how to read which beer to buy and how much it cost.
    Jay pretty much summed everything up to the tee.
    (All the above are MY opinions/suggestions ONLY....AND, I like to bust ball's, it's called having a sense of humor. In other words, no intent to offend anyone, so get over it)

  11. #10
    I worked in the confinement section of a county jail. There were a lot of gang bangers that could not speak worth a darn but they coud remember all the gang signs.
    By faith Noah,being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear,prepared an ark to the saving of his house;by the which he condemned the world,and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith Heb.11:7

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