The Difference Reading Makes

National Literacy Statistics

(Adapted from the READING WRITE Website)

  • At least 50% of the unemployed are functionally illiterate. -U.S. Department of Labor
  • On average, a functionally illiterate adult earns 42% less than a high school graduate. -U.S. Department of Education
  • It is estimated that $5 billion a year in taxes goes to support people receiving public assistance who are unemployable due to illiteracy. -Laubach Literacy Action
  • The average kindergarten student has seen more than 5,000 hours of television, having spent more time in front of the TV than it takes to earn a bachelors’ degree. -U.S. Department of Education
  • People with less than 6 years of schooling are 4 times more likely to be receiving public assistance than those attaining 6 years or more. -American Council of Life Insurance
  • 27% of army enlistees can’t read training manuals written at the 7th-grade level. -Laubach Literacy Action
  • 55% of all children in poverty live in single-parent households headed by women, and 40% of all single mothers have an 8th-grade education or less. -Laubach Literacy Action
  • Youngsters whose parents are functionally illiterate are twice as likely as their peers to be functionally illiterate themselves. -National Assessment of Education Progress