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ERIC Number: EJ919559
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Apr
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0013-127X
The Federal Role in Confronting the Crisis in Adolescent Literacy
Haynes, Mariana
Education Digest: Essential Readings Condensed for Quick Review, v76 n8 p10-15 Apr 2011
For the United States to compete in a global knowledge economy, high schools need to improve dramatically. Young people leave high school without the advanced reading and writing skills required for career and college success. Beginning in the 1980s, reports such as "A Nation at Risk" documented the links between education, reading and writing skills, and the economy, and urged action to greatly accelerate the pace of literacy improvement. Despite these early warnings, limited progress has been made. Although students in grade 4 score among the best in the world, by grade 10 U.S. students place close to the bottom among developed nations. The literacy performance of 13- and 17-year-olds on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) has remained stunningly low, revealing that nearly 6 million of the 22 million American secondary students struggle to read and write. There is widespread recognition of the significant role states must play in making improved student literacy a priority for all students across all grades. However, simply mandating standards and assessments will not guarantee success. Policy makers, schools, and teachers need to step up and accept the "orphaned responsibility" of teaching students to read to learn. The author suggests that it is time for the federal government to invest fully in comprehensive literacy initiatives to ensure that all students graduate from high school prepared with the necessary advanced literacy skills. Only by comprehensively advancing students' literacy achievement will chronically low literacy levels be overcome, resulting in millions of high school students acquiring the skills they need to succeed in the modern world.
Prakken Publications. 832 Phoenix Drive, P.O. Box 8623, Ann Arbor, MI 48108. Tel: 734-975-2800; Fax: 734-975-2787; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Middle Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: National Assessment of Educational Progress