Statistics Related to Literacy and IlliteracyOther Related Pages:
In Washington State, one in six adults don't have English skills to secure a livable wage job. The combination of all the state’s working age adults who have a high school education or less and younger people ages 18 to 24 who have less than a high school diploma, equals the total size of all high school graduating classes between 2000-2011. Reference http://www.naepdc.org/embargo_until_december_15.htm
Between 1990 and 2000, the non-English speaking adult population in Washington State more than doubled from 117,000 to 261,000.
Washington State would realize an estimated $3.9 billion increase in total personal income and $1.4 billion in additional tax revenues if all ethnic groups experienced the same educational attainment and earnings as whites.
The tipping point for a student to obtain a livable wage job and a reliable career is one year of college-level courses plus a credential. ESL students who reached this point or beyond earned $7,000 more per year than ESL students who were unable to reach the one-year tipping point. (Referring to Washington State.)
In 1997, U.S. state prison inmates' educational levels were:
14.2% had an 8th grade education or less;
28.9% had some high school education;
25.1% had a GED;
18.5% were high school graduates;
10.7% had some college education; and
2.7% were college graduates or had advanced degrees. (U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2000, p48, Table 4.1)
Of theU.S. 72 million minor children, 2.1% had a parent in a state or federal prison in 1999. (Mumola, p1)
The number of children with a mother in prison nearly doubled (up 98%) from 1991 to 1999, while the number of children with a father in prison grew by 58% during this period. (Mumola, p2)
In 1999, 22% of all minor children with a parent in custody were under 5 years old. The majority (58%) of all minor children reported by state and federal inmates were less than 10 years old, and the average age of these children was 8 years old. (Mumola, p2)
The age distribution of state prison inmates in 1997 was:
0.5% of state prison inmates were 17 or younger; 19.3% were aged 18-24;
38.1% were 25-34; 29.4% were 35-44; 9.8% were 45-54;
2.2% were 55-64; 0.7% were 65 or older.
(U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2000, p48, Table 4.1)
Enrolled Family Statistics from the National Evaluation in 1996-97 of "Even Start Family Literacy Program."
45% were two-parent families; 37% single-parent families; 16% extended families.
(Tao, p35, Exhibit 3.5)
43% relied on gov. assistance; 49% wages from a job; 8% alimony or other income.
(Tao, p38, Exhibit 3.7)
2% had no schooling; 13% completed grades 1-6; 30% completed grades 7-9;
42% completed grades 10-12; 9% high school diploma/GED; 5% some college ed.
(Tao, p41, Exhibit 3.11)
In The Right Start State Trends: 1998 Conditions of Babies Across America:
Births among teens who were already mothers:
22% of total births in the U.S.
18% of births in the White, non-Hispanic population,
27% of births in the Black Hispanic population,
24% of births in the Hispanic population.
Total teen births:
13% of total births in the U.S.
9% of births in the White, non-Hispanic population,
22% of births in the Black non-Hispanic population,
17% of births in the Hispanic population.
Total births to unmarried women:
33% of total births in the U.S.
22% of total of births in the White, non-Hispanic population,
69% of births in the Black non-Hispanic population,
42% of births in the Hispanic population.
Total births to mothers with less than 12 years of education:Mbr> 22% of total births in the U.S.
13% of births in the White, non-Hispanic population,
27% of births in the Black non-Hispanic population,
49% of births in the Hispanic population. (Croan, p12)
The 1999 National Household Education Survey, 50% of the population aged 25 and over read a newspaper at least once a week, read one or more magazines regularly, and had read a book in the past 6 months. (Wirt, p132, Table 15-1)
Median earnings of workers age 25 and over (year 2000)
Master's degree $55,300; Bachelor's degree $46,300; Associate degree $35,400
Some college, no degree $32,400; High school diploma$28,800;
Some high school - no diploma were $21,400.
(U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2001, p1
In 2000, the unemployment rate of workers age 25 and over was:
master's degree was 1.6%; bachelor's degree was 1.8%;
associate degree was 2.3%; some college, no degree was 2.9%;
high school diploma was 3.5%; some high school, but no diploma was 6.5%.
(U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2001, p1)
Small business owners in the "Voices from Main Street: Assessing the State of Small Business Workforce Skills" thought that the following skills were very important:
86% - verbal communication skills 77% - interpersonal skills 62% - math skills
59% - written communication 52% - basic business skills 46% - financial accounting
43% - mechanical ability 41% - computer skills 18% - Internet knowledge
18% - science (American Express, Small Business Services, p12)
The National Association of Manufacturers 2001 members' survey asked employers about their reasons for rejecting applicants for hourly production positions.
31.6% stated inadequate reading/writing skills; 17.5% inadequate oral communication skills; and
20.7% inadequate math skills. (National Association of Manufacturers, p8, Figure 3)
In 2000, 28.4 million foreign-born people resided in the U.S., representing 10.4% of the total U.S. population. (Lollock, p1)
By 2007 the foreign born population is believed to be over 40 million persons.
Among the foreign born in 2000:
51.0% were born in Latin America, 25.5% were born in Asia,
15.3% were born in Europe, 8.1% were born in other regions of the world. (Lollock, p1)
Regarding multi-language accommodation, In 1996, the Survey on Family and School Partnerships in Public Schools found
85% of public elementary schools (K-8) reported providing interpreters for meetings and conferences for parents with limited English skills,
66% provided translations of newsletters and school notices for parents,
28% provided school signs in different languages. (Carey, p12, Figure 7)
In 1998-99, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) served 2,817,148 students (ages 6-21) with specific learning disabilities, compared to 2,062,076 students in 1989-90. This represents a 36.6% increase. (U.S. Department of Education, pII-20, Table II-2)
In 1998-99, of all the students served under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act IDEA, 50.8% had specific learning disabilities, compared to 48.5% in 1989-90. (U.S. Department of Education, pII-21, Table II-3)
In 1998-99, the racial/ethnic breakdown of students with learning disabilities was:
1.4% American Indian; 1.4% Asian/Pacific Islander; 18.3% Black (non-Hispanic);
15.8% Hispanic; 63.0% White (non-Hispanic). (U.S. Deprt. of Ed, pII-26, Table II-5)
The National Household Education Survey found the following for 3-5 year olds in 1999:
36% visited a library at least once in the last month with a family member,
39% did arts and crafts three or more times in the past week with a family member,
64% were taught letters, words, or numbers 3 or more times per week by a family member,
81% were read to three or more times in the past week by a family member,
50% were told a story three or more times in the past week by a family member,
49% were taught songs and music three or more times in the past week by a family member. (Nord, p4, Table 1)
Poverty/low income rates in U.S. year 2000
9.57% of households had incomes below $10,000; 6.68% incomes of $10,000-$14,999
13.36% had incomes of $15,000-$24,999; 12.88% had incomes of $25,000-$34,999
16.26% had incomes of $35,000-$49,999; 19.11% had incomes of $50,000-$74,000;
10.01% had incomes of $75,000-$99,999; 7.76% had incomes of $100,000-$149,999;
2.23% had incomes of $150,000-$199,999; 2.14% incomes of $200,000 or more.
(U.S. Bureau of Census, p2)
In 1997, children under age 6 living with single mothers were five times as likely to be poor (56%) as were those living with both parents (11%). (National Center for Children in Poverty, p6)
In 1997, the poverty rate among children under age 6 whose better educated parent had:
less than a high school degree was 62.5%; a high school degree was 29.2%;
some college was 15.2%; a college degree was 2.8%.
(National Center for Children in Poverty, p7, Figure 9)
The Current Population Survey done in 1999 found that the average 1998 earnings for high school graduates was $23,594: $28,742 for men, $17,898 for women,
$24,801 for non-Hispanic White adults, $19,225 for non-Hispanic Black adults
$20,978 for Hispanic adults.
Same survey - the avg. 1998 earnings for non-high school graduates was $16,053: $19,155 for men, $11,353 for women,
$16,837 for non-Hispanic White adults, $13,473 for non-Hispanic Black adults,
$15,832 for Hispanic adults. (Newburger, p5)
The ability to read and understand complicated information is important to success in college and, increasingly in the workplace. An analysis of the NAEP long-term trend reading assessments reveals that only half of all White 17 year olds, less than one-quarter of Latino 17 year olds, and less than one-fifth of African American 17 year olds can read at this level. By age 17, only about 1 person in seventeen (17 year olds) can read and gain information from specialized text, for example the science section in the local newspaper. This includes:
1 in 12 White 17 year olds, 1 in 50 Latino 17 year olds,
1 in 100 African American 17 year olds. (Haycock, p5)
Typically 60% of the people in school grades 1 to 12 are raised by a single parent, sometimes working two jobs, surviving on food stamps and welfare checks.
Literacy continues to decline in the U.S. despite massive campaigns and dollars provided by federal and state initiatives.
Only one country spends more per pupil than the United States - Switzerland.
When a child has fallen two grade levels behind the rest of the class and has not mastered reading, upon reaching 9th grade, that person is now two years older than others in the class. Menial jobs will seem alluring, and he or she is 90% at risk of dropping out of school.
"After trying New Age touchy-feely ways to educate children in California, parents and politicians decided it would be good for kids to learn to spell. Assembly bill 1504 requires the State Board of Education to adopt spelling books. None were in use in 1995 when the bill was introduced. They stated "We ended up with math books that had no arithmetic and literature books without reading skills." Books that referenced phonics or spelling had been banned from state-approved lists five years earlier. Five years later, tests revealed that California reading scores ranked last among the 39 states tested. Only the Island of Guam had worse scores. (Chicago Tribune May 14, 1995)"
How many states require high school graduates to demonstrate at least 8th grade reading competency? Thirty. Federal Publications - State of Literacy in America
How many people did AT&T have to interview before they found 1,200 people with adequate reading and writing skills? The answer is 6,000. Source AT&T
From 1992 to 2003, adults made no progress in their ability to read sentences and paragraphs or understand other printed material such as bus schedules or prescription labels.
Even as more people get a formal education, the literacy rate continues to fall. High school dropouts and free flowing immigrants keep the literacy rate in perpetual decline.
Adults with ability to perform challenging and complex reading tasks made an average yearly salary of $50,700 (euro42,250) in 2003. That is $28,000 (euro23,330) more than those who lacked basic skills.
The illiteracy level of our children are appalling. George W. Bush
Rarely is the question asked: is our children learning? George W. Bush
One of the great things about books is sometimes there are some fantastic pictures. George W. Bush
Absolutely, illiteracy can be passed on. Wally Amos
Which country has three times higher illiteracy than Russia? The United States.
How many naval recruits recently failed to meet required reading and writing tests? 30 percent.
Frank Laubach in his book "Teaching the World to Read," "There cannot be education without literacy. Film, lectures, movies, radio, television cannot lift the economic and cultural plight of people who remain illiterate. Locked up in writing are all the great secrets and discoveries the human race has produced in the last 8,000 years.
Always read stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it. PJ O'Rourke, American writer
Outside of a dog, a man's best friend is a book. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. Groucho Marx:
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