§ The U.S. is the only nation where young adults are less educated than the previous generation.
§ One out of five Indian River County adult residents is considered to have substandard literacy skills.
§ One out of three children are not graduating from high school.
§ A child of a parent with substandard literacy skills is three times as likely to drop out of high school and have poor literacy skills when compared to a child with a parent having good literacy skills.
43% of adults at the lowest level of literacy proficiency live in poverty.
Adults with the lowest literacy skills earn a median income of $240 per week, compared to $681 for those with the highest skills.
In 1997, the poverty rate among children under age 6 whose best-educated parent had less than a high school degree was 62.5%.
A study on literacy (included in the Handbook of Early Literacy Research, Vol. 2 edited by Susan Neuman and David Dickinson) shows that while 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.
70% of mothers on welfare have reading skills in the lowest two proficiency levels.
In the 1992 National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS), the average annual household income for the total population was $30,824, compared to $10,138 for Aid to Families with Dependent Children or public assistance recipients, and $9,732 for food stamp recipients.
Negative Impact on Business Owners
Adults at the lowest level of literacy proficiency work an average of 19 weeks per year, compared to 44 weeks per year for those at the highest level.
American businesses lose over $60 billion in productivity each year due to employees' lack of basic reading skills.
In America's prisons, 70% of inmates are illiterate.
Almost three-fourths of those incarcerated have not graduated from high school.