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Fang-Face writes "An interesting look at the state of literacy in the U.S. and a recent movement decrying the slipping standards thereof. Titled
Who Reads in America?, By Mark Schurmann, Pacific News Service, and posted to Alternet.org, this article intimates that literacy is becoming an underground counterculture."
From A PR Newswire: On Thursday, January 19th, 2006 Starbucks
cafes across the country will be hosting the second annual Lattes for Literacy
On Lattes for Literacy Day, 100% of all Starbucks latte proceeds will be
donated to ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation and Frontier College, two important
Canadian charities that are working to ensure that all Canadians have the
literacy skills they need to succeed. The charities will use the funds to help
support youth literacy programs in Canada. The programs address statistics
that show that many Canadians lack the skills needed to meet everyday reading
Not Many Details Here, but The Sofia News Agency reports from Bulgaria where Classic and modern books will be delivered even to the remotest parts of Bulgaria through the mobile library to set off by June.
The idea, which will be implemented for the first time in the country after the example of other states, was presented by Deputy Culture Minister Nadezhda Zaharieva.
Every seventh Bulgarian or 13% of the country's population is illiterate, according to latest surveys. The worrisome percentages of illiteracy among Bulgarians is pertaining mainly to the ethnic minority groups, such as Roma population where 60% of the youth lacks basic education.
"Books are more than just educational. They serve as outlets for our fantasies, can be inspirational, motivational, or just relaxing - pretty much anything you want them to be! This is National Book Week - a time when we encourage you to turn off the TV and pick up a book. Visit your local library (if you do not have a borrower's card, call ahead and see what you need to bring), go to a bookstore (new or used), or ask a friend for a recommendation. You can even join a book club - a wonderful way to connect with others and learn from their perspectives. Many coffee shops and bookstores have postings for book clubs that delve into almost any topic.""
stevenj writes "Several metropolitan papers offer an article today about the national data released on Dec. 16, 2005 that reported a serious decline in college students' literacy skills. Those who like to follow what ALA President Michael Gorman says to the press may want to see what he had to say, as one of the "experts" who was asked to react to the decline in literacy rates. One of his quotes: "It's appalling; it's really astounding. Only 31 percent of college graduates can read a complex book and extrapolate from it. That's not saying much for the remainder.". This one from the Pittsburgh Gazette was slightly longer than others. Read it at: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05360/628033.stm"
The Republican - Springfield,MA says when it comes to learning English, the public library is essential. Libraries are one of the first places new immigrants visit in their search for information and a way to learn about the language and culture, says Jonas Barrientos, 54, a local English teacher for foreigners.
Barrientos has taught English for Speakers of Other Languages at the West Springfield Public Library for the past 13 years, and teaches English at the Westfield Athenaeum as well.
kathleen writes ""A First Look at the Literacy of America's Adults in the 21st Century".
The 2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL) measures the English literacy of America's adults (people age 16 and older living in households and prisons). NAAL builds on the previous national assessment of literacy completed in 1992. The 2003 assessment defines literacy as using printed and written information to function in society, to achieve one's goals, and to develop one's knowledge and potential. Results are reported in terms of scale score averages and literacy levels on three literacy scales: prose, document, and quantitative.
Complete report available here
NATIONAL COALITION FOR LITERACY CALLS FOR GREATER FOCUS ON IMPORTANCE OF FUNCTIONAL LITERACY.
Washington, DC . In response to the release of the National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL) earlier today, the National Coalition for Literacy (NCL) called for a greater emphasis to be placed on functional literacy. The NAAL study found that tens of millions of adult Americans are not functionally literate, meaning they can't read at a level that would allow them to perform such basic tasks as complete a job application, use the internet, or read a bedtime story to a child."
Seattle, the west coast haven of coffee, culture and the Arts has been named America's most literate city. A study put Seattle directly ahead of Minneapolis, Washington D.C., Atlanta and San Francisco in terms of literacy, which researchers said was critical to a city's long term economic and social success.
Researchers at Central Connecticut State University surveyed the literacy of 69 of America's largest cities in terms of newspaper circulation, number of bookstores, library resources, periodical publishing resources, educational attainment and internet use. AP Has More.
Kathleen forwarded an email from REFORMANET: This is just the introductory paragraph of very long and quite interesting article on reading habits in Mexico: what's a best seller's print run; what happens to unsold books; fotonovelas as the most read items, etc. It comes from Confabulario, El Universal's Literary Supplement. It will probably be online for another day or so, at least that has been the pattern in the past. Perhaps some one can summarize it English for the those that don't speak Spanish.
Journalist Mohammed Al-Jazairy says According to the latest statistics by UNESCO, on average, the individual Arab citizen spends no more than six minutes reading for pleasure per year! Moreover, the UNDP's Arab Development Report for 2003 revealed that every year, Spain alone translates more books than the Arab World in its entirety. Not only was the quantity of reading material on the decline but so was the quality, the report added.