Reading to Achieve. A Governor's Guide to Adolescent LiteracyDownload
To compete in the global information economy, young people today need literacy skills far more advanced than have been required of any previous generation. Strong reading, writing, and thinking skills are essential not only for success in school and the workplace, but also for participation in civic life. Yet many youth lack the requisite literacy skills. Only three out of 10 U.S. eighth-graders are proficient readers. Poor readers in elementary and middle school are likely to struggle in high school and are most at risk of dropping out before graduation. Even many high school graduates are unprepared to meet the literacy expectations of their professors or employers. Opportunities for economic success will increasingly require that young people possess strong literacy skills. Nearly two-thirds of new jobs in this decade will require some postsecondary education, and the fastest-growing jobs make the highest literacy and education demands. Unfortunately, for too many students, literacy instruction ends in third grade. The nation's eight million struggling readers who are adolescentsâ defined in this guide as students in grades four through 12 also need extra support. A state commitment to providing literacy instruction to students from kindergarten through 12th grade is necessary for governors to meet adequate yearly progress targets, raise high school graduation rates, increase the value of the high school diploma, and close the achievement gap.
Citation: Reading to Achieve. A Governor's Guide to Adolescent Literacy, (National Governors Association Center, 2005)