International Literacy Day will be celebrated across the world today and this yearʻs theme is “literacy and sustainable societies” as designated by UNESCO.
America is not untouched by illiteracy, here are some facts we found courtesy do something.org:
Literacy In America
- More than half of the students who cannot read proficiently by the end of 4th grade will end up in jail or on welfare.
- One in four children in America grow up without learning how to read.
- Students who don’t read proficiently by the 3rd grade are 4 times likelier to drop out of school.
- As of 2011, America was the only free-market OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) country where the present generation was less educated than the one before it.
- About 85% of the juveniles who face trial are functionally illiterate, proving that there is a close relationship between illiteracy and crime.
- More than 60% of all inmates are functionally illiterate.
- 75% of Americans who receive food stamps perform at the lowest 2 levels of literacy, and 90% of high school dropouts are on welfare.
- Teenage girls between 16 and 19 who live at or below the poverty line and have below average literacy skills are 6 times more likely to have children out of wedlock than girls their age who can read proficiently.
- Reports show that low literacy in the United States directly costs the healthcare industry over $70 million every year.
So which are the most literate and illiterate cities in the United States?
In 2013, Washington, D.C. was ranked the most literate American city for the third year in a row, with Seattle and Minneapolis close behind. Long Beach, CA was ranked the country’s most illiterate city, followed by Mesa, AZ, and Aurora, CO.
“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin
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