This report is fairly recent and states that 42% of adults in Canada are lacking adequate literacy skills. This report compiles reasoning and solutions in order to bring National literacy to a higher level, which in turn drives economic growth and empowers individuals to engage in democratic and social decisions. Literacy begins with childhood and the report acknowledges that the benefits of literacy accrue over a lifetime and focusing on youth is the primary goal.
Several issues are identified in the beginning of the report:
1. The inability of many Canadian children to access high-quality early childhood education and care programs. Access tends to be a particular challenge for those children who are most vulnerable to poor literacy outcomes because they lack adequate supports through their home and neighbourhood environments. 2. T he inability of many Canadian children to access libraries, and other supporting programs and services, again with access challenges increasing for many of the most vulnerable Canadian children.
3. The inability of many Canadian schools to identify and deal effectively with children who already lag behind their peers when they first enter school.
4. T he need to improve teacher preparation in the area of reading development and reading instruction, and to improve the quality of literacy-related instruction in Canadian classrooms.
Although these are large issues, I believe that free literacy tutoring in neighbourhoods will significantly increase literacy in the students involved. The key is to create a fun environment with engaging visuals that inspire and uplift the community, volunteers, and students.
Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network. National Strategy for Early Literacy: Report and Recommendations. London, ON, Canada: Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network, 2009.