The Coming Death of Newspapers

August 14, 2007

clipped from www.heartland.org
HEARTLAND INSTITUTE


U.S. newspapers have a life-or-death interest in schoolchildren being taught how to read and becoming motivated to read regularly.

The trends are not encouraging—for literacy or for newspapers. National Assessment of Educational Progress reading scores for fourth-graders have not budged off dreadful over the past decade. Poor and minority children have fallen even further behind, despite a federal expenditure of $125 billion over 25 years that was supposed to narrow the gap.

Among 18 industrialized nations, OECD found, the United States ranked dead last in the literacy of 16- to 25-year-old high school graduates who did not go on to further study. Six in 10 of the high school graduates read below a level considered minimally necessary to cope with “the complex demands of modern life.”

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