Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Illiteracy Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1500 words

Illiteracy - Essay Example The U.S. does not have this capability which many have argued has led to a great increase in the levels of illiteracy in the country. According to a US government report, The State of Literacy in America, released in 1998 by the National Institute for Literacy (NIL) (cited in Roberts, 1998), there has been a significant growth in illiteracy in America. â€Å"Over 90 million US adults, nearly one out of two, are functionally illiterate or near illiterate, without the minimum skills required in a modern society† (Roberts, 1998). Many experts have blamed this failing on an educational system that focuses almost exclusively upon a sight-based reading program that has proven to be ineffective for the majority of learners (Hoerl, 1997). Not surprisingly, there is a very high rate of illiteracy among children and young adults in the juvenile justice system according to a study revealed in the book Retarding America the Imprisonment of Potential. It has been shown that these kids who learn to read while incarcerated have a strikingly lower recidivism rate than those who do not. Despite these findings, the majority of juvenile and adult prisons, as well as many schools and adult assistance institutions, teach the sight-based reading system (Brunner, 1993). Unquestionably, the debate regarding reading education methods have brought about emotional responses from all those affected for over a century. Why Johnny Can’t Read, written by Rudolph Flesch in 1955, sparked a nationwide discussion. Flesch suggested that practically all reading problems experienced by children in the U.S. were caused from educators and publishers who had banned together in an effort to deny phonics instruction. Following the publication of Learning to Read: The Great Debate (Chall, 1967), an evaluation of all published research to date on the effects of various approaches to beginning

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