New York’s Literacy Problem

A total of 3.4 million New York State residents are either functionally illiterate–reading below the 5th grade level—lack a High School Diploma or cannot speak English…

BUT fewer than 10% are receiving help for their literacy needs.

Low literacy affects every area of life

43% of adults with the lowest literacy skills live in poverty
50% of the chronically unemployed are functionally illiterate
76% of adults on public assistance are low literate  or unable to read more than simple text
Public assistance recipients with the lowest literacy skills stay on assistance the longest
Parents who can’t read are likely to have children who can’t read well
75% of prisoners fall into the lowest two levels of literacy
85% of juvenile offenders have reading problems

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