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Why Johnny can’t keep US competitive

Hillary Wicai May 23, 2006
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Why Johnny can’t keep US competitive

Hillary Wicai May 23, 2006
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SCOTT JAGOW: A new report has some rather disturbing news. The functional illiteracy rate in this country is 25 percent — same as it’s been for decades. As Hillary Wicai tells us, teachers aren’t being taught how to teach reading.


HILLARY WICAI: Turns out they’re not learning about the science behind reading, despite decades of research.

The National Council on Teacher Quality estimates 85 percent of colleges and universities specializing in teaching future educators are not teaching reading science.

Kate Walsh heads the NCTQ. She says if colleges are not teaching the teachers and they, in turn, are not teaching the kids, the result is a country losing its competitive edge.

KATE WALSH: Maybe the nation could tolerate 1 in 4 students being functionally illiterate 50 years ago. We can no longer tolerate that level of illiteracy, there just won’t be the jobs for folks with that low skill.

The study calls for states to develop strong licensing tests.

In Washington, I’m Hillary Wicai for Marketplace.

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