11 Facts about Literacy in America
1. Two-thirds of students who cannot read proficiently by the end of the fourth grade will end up in jail or on welfare.
2. One in four children in America grows up without learning how to read.
3. Students who do not read proficiently by the third grade are four times likelier to drop out of school.
4. As of 2011, America was the only free-market OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) country where the current generation was less educated than the previous one.
5. Nearly eighty-five percent of juveniles who face trial in the juvenile court system are functionally illiterate, proving that there is a close relationship between illiteracy and crime. More than sixty percent of all inmates are functionally illiterate.
6. Fifty-three percent of fourth graders admitted to reading recreationally "almost every day," while only twenty percent of eighth graders could say the same.
7. Seventy-five percent of Americans who receive food stamps perform at the lowest two levels of literacy, and ninety percent of high school dropouts are on welfare.
8. Teenage girls between the ages of 16 to 19 who live at or below the poverty line and have below average literacy skills are six times more likely to have children out of wedlock than girls their age who can read proficiently.
9. Reports show that the rate of low literacy in the United States directly costs the healthcare industry over $70 million every year.
10. In 2013, Washington, D.C. was ranked the most literate American city for the third year in a row, with Seattle and Minneapolis close behind.
11. Long Beach, CA was ranked the country's most illiterate city, followed by Mesa, AZ, and Aurora, CO.
“11 Facts About Literacy in America.” 11 Facts about Literacy in America. Web. 24 Aug. 2015.