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ERIC Number: ED510937
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Jun
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 10
Reading and Writing in the Academic Content Areas. Issue Brief
Alliance for Excellent Education
Today, less than one-third of America's high school students read or write at grade level. Literacy skills are alarmingly low even among those students who plan to go to college. Clearly, vast numbers of middle and high school students need help with their reading and writing skills. The question is: Whose job should it be to teach them? Among researchers, school reformers, and professional associations, the consensus view is that every middle and high school teacher has a role to play in helping students to become fully literate. If teachers of math, English, history, science, and other subjects are to shoulder more responsibility for literacy instruction, they will need to be given the kinds of professional development that will enable them to succeed, along with the kinds of encouragement and organizational incentives needed to break from familiar routines and beliefs. This paper offers a four-part agenda for literacy in the content areas: (1) Some reading comprehension strategies should be taught in every content area; (2) In every content area, teachers should provide instruction in the reading and writing skills that are specific to that content area; (3) Schools and districts should invest in reading specialists to address local needs for the teaching of basic reading skills to middle- and high school-age students; and (4) Districts and states should revise their standards, accountability systems, and other policies to encourage more reading and writing in the content areas.
Alliance for Excellent Education. 1201 Connecticut Avenue NW Suite 901, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-828-0828; Fax: 202-828-0821; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Alliance for Excellent Education