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Why This Matters

Facts About Early Literacy:

  1. The single most important factor influencing a child's early educational success is an introduction to books and being read to at home prior to beginning school.
      — National Commission on Reading
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  3. The only behavior measure that correlates significantly with reading scores is the number of books in the home.
      — The Literacy Crisis: False Claims, Real Solutions
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  5. Having books in the home is twice as important as the father's education level.
      — Research in Social Stratification and Mobility
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  7. In middle-income neighborhoods the ratio of books per child is 13:1. 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, Vol. 2. New York, NY
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  9. 2 out of 3 low-income families have no books at all in their homes for their children.
      — Reading Literacy in the United States
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  11. More than $2 billion is spent each year on students who repeat a grade because they have reading problems.
      — U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services
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  13. 2 out of 3 students who cannot read proficiently by the end of 4th grade will end up in jail or on welfare.
      — Begintoread.com
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  15. Perhaps the most serious problem with current literacy campaigns is that they ignore, and even divert attention from the real problem: lack of access to books for children of poverty.
      — Krashen
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  17. The most successful way to improve the reading achievement of low-income children is to increase their access to print.
      — Newman, Sanford, et all. "American's Child Care Crisis: A Crime Prevention Tragedy"; Fight Crime: Invest in Kids.
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