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Research - Reading

Reading aloud is the single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading. Reach Out and Read, Archives of Disease in Childhood, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, 2008.


Of all parent-child activities, reading aloud provides the richest exposure to language, so promotion of reading aloud, especially for children from more disadvantaged backgrounds, holds great promise for strengthening school readiness and laying a strong foundation for future educational success. Reach Out and Read, Archives of Disease in Childhood, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, 2008.


Reading aloud to young children is not only one of the best activities to stimulate language and cognitive skills; it also builds motivation, curiosity, and memory. Bardige, B. Talk to Me, Baby!(2009), Paul H Brookes Pub Co.



Early literacy encompasses all of a child’s experiences with conversation, stories (oral and written), books, and print. Rebecca Parlakian, Before the ABCs: Promoting School Readiness in Infants and Toddlers. Washington, DC: Zero to Three, 2003.


At its heart, literacy is about communication, which begins long before a baby utters her first word. Babies are prewired to learn, communicate, and connect with others; they tell us what they need through their cries, facial expressions, sounds, and movements. Janice Im, Carol Osborn, Sylvia Sánchez, et al., Cradling Literacy: Building Teachers’ Skills to Nurture Early Language and Literacy from Birth to Five. Washington, DC: Zero to Three, 2007.


Across the nation just under half of children between birth and five years (47.8%) are read to every day by their parents or other family members . Russ S, Perez V, Garro N, Klass P, Kuo AA, Gershun M, Halfon N, Zuckerman B. Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook (2007): Reach Out and Read National Center, Boston, MA .


1 in 4 children in America grow up without learning how to read. WriteExpress Corporation. "Literacy Statistics." Begin to Read. Accessed April 16, 2014.


Children growing up in homes with at least 20 books get 3 years more schooling than children from bookless homes, independent of their parents’ education, occupation, and class. Evans, M. D., Kelley, J., Sikora, J., & Treiman, D. J. (2010). Family scholarly culture and educational success: Books and schooling in 27 nations. Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, 28(2), 171-197.


Creating a steady stream of new, age-appropriate books has been shown to nearly triple interest in reading within months. Harris, Louis. An Assessment of the Impact of First Book’s Northeast Program. January 2003.


Experts are nearly unanimous in stating that babies should routinely experience shared books as soon as they experience shared talking, that is, during the first weeks and months of life. Butler, D. (1998). Babies need books. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.


The nurturing and one-on-one attention from parents during reading aloud encourages children to form a positive association with books and reading later in life. Reach Out and Read, Archives of Disease in Childhood, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, 2008. 


Giving children access to print materials is associated with positive behavioral, educational, and psychological outcomes. Reading Is Fundamental, Access to Print Materials Improves Children’s Reading: A Meta-Analysis of 108 Most Relevant Studies Shows Positive Impacts, 2010)


Across the nation just under half of children between birth and five years (47.8%) are read to every day by their parents or other family members. Russ S, Perez V, Garro N, Klass P, Kuo AA, Gershun M, Halfon N, Zuckerman B. Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook (2007): Reach Out and Read National Center, Boston, MA.


Children who live in print-rich environments and who are read to during the first years of life are much more likely to learn to read on schedule. Reach Out and Read, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, Archives for Disease Control, 2008. 


The Early Childhood Longitudinal Study found that in the spring of 2000, the children who were read to at least three times a week by a family member were almost twice as likely to score in the top 25% in reading compared to children who were read to less than 3 times a week. Denton, Kristen and Gerry West, Children’s Reading and Mathematics Achievement in Kindergarten and First Grade (PDF file), U.S. Department of Education, NCES, Washington, D,2002.

By the age of 2, children who are read to regularly display greater language comprehension, larger vocabularies, and higher cognitive skills than their peers. Raikes, H., Pan, B.A., Luze, G.J., Tamis-LeMonda, C.S.,Brooks-Gunn, J., Constantine, J., Tarullo, L.B., Raikes, H.A., Rodriguez, E. (2006).


37% of children arrive at kindergarten without the skills necessary for lifetime learning. Landry, S. H. (2005). Effective Early Childhood Programs: Turning Knowledge Into Action. Houston, TX: University of Texas, Health Science Center at Houston.

There is almost a 90% probability that a child will remain a poor reader at the end of the fourth grade if the child is a poor reader at the end of first grade. Boyer, The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.


Children and teenagers who read for pleasure on a daily or weekly basis score better on reading tests than infrequent readers. Frequent readers also score better on writing tests than non-readers or infrequent readers. Reach Out and Read, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, Archives for Disease Control, 2008.


Higher reading exposure was 95% positively correlated with a “hub” region supporting semantic language processing in the brain, controlling for household income. Hutton, J. S., Horowitz-Kraus, T., Mendelsohn, A. L., DeWitt, T., & Holland, S. K. (2015). Home Reading Environment and Brain Activation in Preschool Children Listening to Stories. Pediatrics, 136(3), 466-478.


Findings show higher-than-average scores among students who reported more types of reading material at home. Donahue, P. L., A. D. Finnegan, and N. L. Lutkus, The Nation’s Report Card: Fourth-Grade Reading 2001 (PDF file), U.S. Department of Education, NCES, Washington, DC 2001.


80% of students, when asked which book they had enjoyed most, said that they most enjoyed the one they had selected themselves. Gambrell, L.B. (1996). Creating classroom cultures that foster reading motivation. The Reading Teacher, 50.


Students who choose what they read and have an informal environment in which to read tend to be more motivated, read more and show greater language and literacy development. Krashen, S. (1993). The Power of Reading. Englewood, Col.: Libraries Unlimited, Inc.


Teachers like to provide choice in the classroom because they believe that it increases motivation, effort and learning. Flowerday, T. & Schraw, G. (2000). Teacher Beliefs About Instructional Choice: A phenomenological approach. Journal of Educational Psychology, 74, 141-153.


1 in 4 children in America grow up without learning how to read. WriteExpress Corporation. "Literacy Statistics." Begin to Read. Accessed April 16, 2014.


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Research- Reading and Family Income

The average child from a professional family hears 215,000 words per week; a child from a working class family hears 125,000 words per week; and a child from a family receiving welfare benefits hears 62,000 words per week. Hart, B. & Risley, T.R. (1995). Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experience of Young American Children. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing.


On average, children in economically depressed communities have 0-2 age appropriate books in their homes. Jeff McQuillan. The Literacy Crisis. California State University, 1998.


In middle-income neighborhoods the ratio of books per child is 13 to 1, in low-income neighborhoods, the ratio is 1 age-appropriate book for every 300 children. Neuman, Susan B. and David K. Dickinson, ed. Handbook of Early Literacy Research, Volume 2. New York, NY: 2006, p. 31.

On average, children in economically depressed communities have 0-2 age appropriate books in their homes. Jeff McQuillan. The Literacy Crisis. California State University, 1998.


The average child growing up in a middle class family has been exposed to 1,000 to 1,700 hours of one-on-one picture book reading. Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007.


Two out of every five children among high-income families are not read to daily. Neuman, S., & Dickinson, D. (Eds.). (2006) Handbook of Early Literacy Research (Vol. 2).


61% of low-income families have no age-appropriate books in their homes. Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007.


The average child growing up in a low-income family has only been exposed to 25 hours of one-on-one reading. Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007.


Children in low-income families lack essential one-on-one reading time. The average child growing up in a middle class family has been exposed to 1,000 to 1,700 hours of one-on-one picture book reading. The average child growing up in a low-income family, in contrast, has only been exposed to 25 hours of one-on-one reading. McQuillan, J. (1998).The Literacy Crisis: False Claims, Real Solutions. Heinemann.


The most successful way to improve the reading achievement of low-income children is to increase their access to print. Newman, Sanford, et all. “Americans Child Care Crisis: A Crime Prevention Tragedy”; Fight Crime; Invest in Kids, 2000. Mother-child bookreading in low-income families: Correlates and outcomes during the first three years of life.” Child Development, 77(4).

80% of preschool and after-school programs serving low-income populations have no age-appropriate books for their children. Neuman, Susan B., et al. Access for All: Closing the Book Gap for Children in Early Education. Newark, DE: International Reading Association, 2001, p. 3.


Children from low-income families are at greater risk for entering school unprepared. According to a national longitudinal analysis by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), economically disadvantaged children may know only one or two letters of the alphabet when entering kindergarten, while children in the middle class will know all 26. Lee, V. E. & Burkam, D. T. (2002). Inequality at the starting gate: Social background differences in achievement as children begin school. Washington, D.C.: Economic Policy Institute.


Half of children from low-income communities start first grade up to two years behind their peers. Brizius, J. A., & Foster S. A. (1993). Generation to Generation: Realizing the Promise of Family Literacy. High/Scope Press.



Children from lower-income homes have limited access to books. Because of this, preschoolers from low-income families have fewer home and preschool language and literacy opportunities than children from economically advantaged backgrounds – a major reason that they lag behind in reading achievement throughout the school years. Berk, L. E. (2009) Child Development (8th ed.). Pearson Education, Inc

Half of these children from low-income communities start first grade up to two years behind their peers. Brizius, J. A., & Foster S. A. (1993). Generation to Generation: Realizing the Promise of Family Literacy. High/Scope Press.


80% of preschool and after-school programs serving low-income populations have no age-appropriate books for their children. Neuman, Susan B., et al. Access for All: Closing the Book Gap for Children in Early Education. Newark, DE: International Reading Association, 2001, p. 3.

Almost 13 million American children live in poverty. Geography Matters: Child Well-Being in the States. Every Child Matters Education Fund April 2008.

Researchers estimate that before ever entering kindergarten, cognitive scores for children of low-income families are likely to average 60 percent lower than those in the highest socioeconomic groups, something that remains true through high school. Lee, V. E. & Burkam, D. T. (2002). Inequality at the starting gate: Social background differences in achievement as children begin school. Washington, D.C.: Economic Policy Institute.


One in six children who are not reading proficiently in the third grade do not graduate from high school on time, a rate four times greater than that for proficient readers. This rate is higher in children from low-income families and rural areas. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center.


68% of America’s fourth graders read at a below proficient level. 82% of those children are from low-income families. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Double Jeopardy: How Third Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation, 2011.


78% of juvenile crime is committed by high school dropouts. “Literacy Research.” National Children’s Reading Foundation.


An American kid drops out of high school every 26 seconds. The Forum for Youth Investment with the Ready by 21™ Partners. Getting the Most Out of Your Dropout Prevention Summit: Planning Guide. May 2008. Forum for Youth Investment and America’s Promise Alliance.


Each dropout, over his or her lifetime, costs the nation approximately $260,000. Rouse, C.E. (2005). “Labor market consequences of an inadequate education.” Paper prepared the Social Costs of Inadequate Education symposium, Teachers College Columbia University. October 2005.


Half of youths with a history of substance abuse have reading problems. National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities. (1998). Children with reading disability. Washington, D.C.: Robert Bock.


Among those who reach adulthood with the lowest level of literacy proficiency, 43% live in poverty. Among those who have strong literacy skills, only 4% live in poverty. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center.

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Research- Reading and Children in Need

61% of low-income families have no age-appropriate books in their homes. Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007.


On average, children in economically depressed communities have 0-2 age appropriate books in their homes. Jeff McQuillan. The Literacy Crisis. California State University, 1998.


There is only one book for every 300 children in low-income neighborhoods. Reading Literacy in the United States: Findings from the IEA Reading Literacy Study, 1996.


The average child growing up in a low-income family has only been exposed to 25 hours of one-on-one reading. Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007.


The most successful way to improve the reading achievement of low-income children is to increase their access to print. Newman, Sanford, et all. “Americans Child Care Crisis: A Crime Prevention Tragedy”; Fight Crime; Invest in Kids, 2000. Mother-child bookreading in low-income families: Correlates and outcomes during the first three years of life.” Child Development, 77(4).


Children from low-income families are at greater risk for entering school unprepared. According to a national longitudinal analysis by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), economically disadvantaged children may know only one or two letters of the alphabet when entering kindergarten, while children in the middle class will know all 26. Lee, V. E. & Burkam, D. T. (2002). Inequality at the starting gate: Social background differences in achievement as children begin school. Washington, D.C.: Economic Policy Institute. 


Half of children from low-income communities start first grade up to two years behind their peers. Brizius, J. A., & Foster S. A. (1993). Generation to Generation: Realizing the Promise of Family Literacy. High/Scope Press.


1 in 4 children in America grow up without learning how to read. WriteExpress Corporation. "Literacy Statistics." Begin to Read. Accessed April 16, 2014.


One in six children who are not reading proficiently in the third grade do not graduate from high school on time, a rate four times greater than that for proficient readers. This rate is higher in children from low-income families and rural areas. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center.


The sad truth is that the vast majority of children who start behind, stay behind, leading to an increase in our nation’s dropouts rate among low-income and minority students. America’s Early Childhood. Jumpstart, 2009.


68% of America’s fourth graders read at a below proficient level. 82% of those children are from low-income families. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Double Jeopardy: How Third Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation, 2011.


Each dropout, over his or her lifetime, costs the nation approximately $260,000. Rouse, C.E. (2005). “Labor market consequences of an inadequate education.” Paper prepared the Social Costs of Inadequate Education symposium, Teachers College Columbia University. October 2005.


Half of youths with a history of substance abuse have reading problems. National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities. (1998). Children with reading disability. Washington, D.C.: Robert Bock.


Among those who reach adulthood with the lowest level of literacy proficiency, 43% live in poverty. Among those who have strong literacy skills, only 4% live in poverty. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center.

Research-d

Giving children access to print materials is associated with positive behavioral, educational, and psychological outcomes.

***********Frequency and the quality of words a child hears during their first three years of life are critically important in shaping the child's language development.

************Children who are read to at least three times a week by a family member are almost twice as likely to score in the top 25% in reading than children who were read to less than three times a week.

***********Children growing up in homes with many books, get 3 years more schooling than children from bookless homes, independent of their parents' education, occupation, and class.

**********Children in professional families hear approximately 11 million words per year; children in working class families hear 6 million words; and children in welfare families hear approximately 3 million words annually.

**********62% of parents with a high socioeconomic status read to their children every day, compared to 36% of parents with a low socioeconomic status.

Research has found that 61 percent of low-income families have no books at all in their homes for their children.

In low-income neighborhoods the ratio of book to child is 1 to 300 (1 book for every 300 children).

*********87% of students who reported reading on their own time once a month or more performed at the Proficient level, while students who never or hardly ever read for fun performed at the Basic level.

***********Students who read for fun every day scored the highest.

***********Out-of-school reading habits of students has shown that even 15 minutes of independent reading can expose students to more than a million words of text a year.


********Did you know that 68% of America’s fourth graders do not read at a proficient level?

How about the fact that 


********one out of six children who do not read at age level by the end of third grade will not graduate from high school?

It’s clear that many kids struggle with literacy. That’s why CLiF’s programs and book giveaways aim to help children develop a love of books at a young age. Studies show that when kids read more often for fun, they have a better chance of becoming strong readers.

But it’s parents and the other adults in children’s lives who can make the biggest difference.

AT CLIF, WE ENCOURAGE PARENTS TO READ ALOUD TO THEIR CHILDREN BEGINNING AT BIRTH.

We also strive to provide parents and adults with the necessary tools to inspire a love of reading and writing in children who are at a high risk of growing up with low literacy skills across New Hampshire and Vermont.

This is how we help:

We provide access to books at home, at school, and at libraries.

We show children that reading is fun and interesting.

We empower children to choose their own books.

We involve parents in reading with their children.

Here are some frequently asked questions about the role of books and reading in children’s lives. All the answers are taken from national research studies.

WHY IS ACCESS TO BOOKS IMPORTANT?



Having books in the home has been proven to:

Improve a child’s reading performance.

Cause children to read more and for longer lengths of time.

Produce improved attitudes toward reading and learning among children. (1)



Children who live in print-rich environments and who are read to during the first years of life are much more likely to learn to read on schedule. (2)

HOW CLIF HELPS

CLiF increases the number of books in the homes of low-income, at-risk, and rural children through book donations across New Hampshire and Vermont. We also donate books to rural public libraries, school libraries, shelters, low-income housing, Head Starts, and other partner organizations.

CLiF also gives seminars to parents. In our seminars, parents learn why it is important to read aloud to their children beginning at birth. We also provide fun and easy ways to read aloud from picture books even if a parent isn’t a strong or confident reader.

WHY IS IT BENEFICIAL TO LET CHILDREN CHOOSE THEIR OWN BOOKS?

When pupils were asked which book they had enjoyed most, 80% of them said that the one they had enjoyed most was the one they had selected themselves. (4)

Students who choose what they read and have an informal environment in which to read tend to be more motivated, read more and show greater language and literacy development. (5)

Teachers like to provide choice in the classroom because they believe that it increases motivation, effort and learning. (6)

HOW CLIF HELPS

We give each child who attends a CLiF program the opportunity to choose his or her own books. We know that children have diverse interests, from wizards to detectives to deer hunting, so we bring a selection of hundreds of books to every CLiF event.

After most of our programs, each child in attendance chooses two books to take home and keep.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR CHILDREN TO READ FOR ENJOYMENT?

Children and teenagers who read for pleasure on a daily or weekly basis score better on reading tests than infrequent readers. Frequent readers also score better on writing tests than non-readers or infrequent readers. (3)

HOW CLIF HELPS

Our storytelling programs, writing workshops, and author/illustrator visits inspire children to find the fun, adventure, and pleasure in reading and writing. We also give free books to children and organizations to make sure children have plenty of exciting reading material.

WHY IS READING ALOUD WITH CHILDREN IMPORTANT?

Reading aloud is the single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading. (8)



Of all parent-child activities, reading aloud provides the richest exposure to language, so promotion of reading aloud, especially for children from more disadvantaged backgrounds, holds great promise for strengthening school readiness and laying a strong foundation for future educational success. (8)



The nurturing and one-on-one attention from parents during reading aloud encourages children to form a positive association with books and reading later in life. (7)

HOW CLIF HELPS

Our parent seminars help parent understand why they should read aloud to their children as often as possible. We also explain fun and easy ways to read aloud from picture books even if the parent isn’t a strong or confident reader.

IS FAMILY INCOME A FACTOR IN WHETHER OR NOT CHILDREN HAVE BOOKS AT HOME AND ARE READ TO ON A REGULAR BASIS?




61% of low-income families have no age-appropriate books in their homes. (9)

Children from middle-income homes have on average 13 books per child. There is only one book for every 300 children in low-income neighborhoods. (10)

Fewer than half (48%) of young children in the U.S. are read to daily. The percentage of children read to daily drops even lower (to 36%) among low-income families, whose children face the highest risk of literacy problems. (11)

Even among high-income families, however, more than two out of every five children are not read to daily. (11)

The average child growing up in a middle class family has been exposed to 1,000 to 1,700 hours of one-on-one picture book reading. (12)

The average child growing up in a low-income family has only been exposed to 25 hours of one-on-one reading. (12)

39% of children from Vermont and 26% from New Hampshire are from families at 200% below poverty level. (14)

HOW CLIF HELPS

CLiF gives books directly to children from low-income, at-risk, and rural families. This increases the number of books they have at home.

We also donate books to rural public libraries, Head Start programs, low-income housing, shelters, elementary schools, and prisons. These donations increase the number of high-quality books that low-income, at-risk, and rural children can access on a regular basis.

CLiF also gives seminars to parents. In our seminars, parents learn why it is important to read aloud to their children beginning at birth. We also provide fun and easy ways to read aloud from picture books even if a parent isn’t a strong or confident reader.

CAN LOW LITERACY SKILLS AFFECT A CHILD’S FUTURE?

One in six children who are not reading proficiently in the third grade do not graduate from high school on time, a rate four times greater than that for proficient readers. This rate is higher in children from low-income families and rural areas. (15)

68% of America’s fourth graders read at a below proficient level. 82% of those children are from low-income families. (16)

59% of fourth graders in Vermont and 57% in New Hampshire score below proficient in reading. 75% of those children are from low-income families. (17)

Among those who reach adulthood with the lowest level of literacy proficiency, 43% live in poverty. Among those who have strong literacy skills, only 4% live in poverty. (18)

HOW CLIF HELPS

In addition to CLiF’s storytelling programs, writing workshops, author/illustrator visits, and book giveaways, our Year of the Book program is designed to enhance existing literacy programs in elementary schools. Year of the Book provides interactive literacy events, workshops, free books, and financial support to teachers and schools in towns with low testing scores and high percentages




1 (Source: Reading Is Fundamental, Access to Print Materials Improves Children’s Reading: A Meta-Analysis of 108 Most Relevant Studies Shows Positive Impacts, 2010)

2 (Source: Reach Out and Read, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, Archives for Disease Control, 2008)

3 (Source: National Endowment for the Arts, To Read or Not to Read: A Question of National Consequence, 2007)

4 (Source: Gambrell, L.B. (1996). Creating classroom cultures that foster reading motivation. The Reading Teacher, 50.)

5 (Source: Krashen, S. (1993). The Power of Reading. Englewood, Col.: Libraries Unlimited, Inc.)

6 (Source: Flowerday, T. & Schraw, G. (2000). Teacher Beliefs About Instructional Choice: A phenomenological approach. Journal of Educational Psychology, 74, 141-153.

7 (Please note that the information in the studies mentioned in footnotes 4, 5, and 6, came from Reading for Pleasure: A research overview done by the National Literacy Trust, November 2006.)

8 (Source: Reach Out and Read, Archives of Disease in Childhood, Reading Aloud to Children: The Evidence, 2008)

9 (Source: Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007)

10 (Source: Reading Literacy in the United States: Findings from the IEA Reading Literacy Study, 1996.)

11 (Source: Neuman, S., & Dickinson, D. (Eds.). (2006) Handbook of Early Literacy Research (Vol. 2).]

12 (Source: Reach Out and Read, Reading Across the Nation: A Chartbook, 2007)

13 (Source: McQuillan, J. (1998). The Literacy Crisis: False Claims, Real Solutions. Heinemann. –pulled from the Reading Is Fundamental website)

14 (Source: Betty Hart and Todd Risley, Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experience of Young American Children (Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing, 1996)

15 (Source: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center)

16 (Source: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Double Jeopardy: How Third Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation, 2011)

17 (Source: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Early Warning: Why Reading at the End of Third Grade Matters, 2010) [link: http://datacenter.kidscount.org/reports/readingmatters.aspx]

18 (Source: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center)

Literacy in the Labor Force: Results from the National Adult Literacy Survey. National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, 1999. [link: http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=1999470]The most successful way to improve the reading achievement of low-income children is to increase their access to print. Newman, Sanford, et all. “Americans Child Care Crisis: A Crime Prevention Tragedy”; Fight Crime; Invest in Kids, 2000.


Mother-child bookreading in low-income families: Correlates and outcomes during the first three years of life.” Child Development, 77(4).


Children from low-income families are at greater risk for entering school unprepared. According to a national longitudinal analysis by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), economically disadvantaged children may know only one or two letters of the alphabet when entering kindergarten, while children in the middle class will know all 26. Lee, V. E. & Burkam, D. T. (2002). Inequality at the starting gate: Social background differences in achievement as children begin school. Washington, D.C.: Economic Policy Institute.


Half of these children from low-income communities start first grade up to two years behind their peers. Brizius, J. A., & Foster S. A. (1993). Generation to Generation: Realizing the Promise of Family Literacy. High/Scope Press.


Almost 13 million American children live in poverty (“Geography Matters: Child Well-Being in the States. Every Child Matters Education Fund April 2008.


78% of juvenile crime is committed by high school dropouts. “Literacy Research.” National Children’s Reading Foundation.


An American kid drops out of high school every 26 seconds. The Forum for Youth Investment with the Ready by 21™ Partners. Getting the Most Out of Your Dropout Prevention Summit: Planning Guide. May 2008. Forum for Youth Investment and America’s Promise Alliance.


Each dropout, over his or her lifetime, costs the nation approximately $260,000. Rouse, C.E. (2005). “Labor market consequences of an inadequate education.” Paper prepared the Social Costs of Inadequate Education symposium, Teachers College Columbia University. October 2005.


Half of youths with a history of substance abuse have reading problems. National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities. (1998). Children with reading disability. Washington, D.C.: Robert Bock.