Why Improving Reading Comprehension Is Critical - Frightening Educational Statistics

The educational statistics in the United States are frightening. Most worst than most people imagine in their worst case scenario. If we are to improve these numbers improving reading comprehension will play a critical role. As unpleasant as the following statistics might appear, you need to know these facts so you don't become the next dismal statistic.

Did you know that 40% of all high school students fail to graduate? This is the national average. In many areas the statistics are much worst. In New York City, there were many high schools that had 1-2% of their students graduating. Although these schools were shut down, these are still very disturbing numbers. Unfortunately, it gets much worst.

Let's look at the 60% of high school students who do not drop out. Did you know that 28% of high school seniors can't read? The national reading test that the government proudly touts, is in fact an 8th grade reading exam. That right-an 8th grade reading exam. In order to graduate the 12th grade in the United States you need to be able to read at the 8th grade level. Yet 28% of the seniors can even do this!!! Poor reading comprehension skills account for much of this failure.

If you thought reading statistics were bad, wait till you look at the math statistics. They are even worst! Did you know that 38% of high school seniors can't count? That is correct. Even worst, I am not talking about algebra, geometry, or calculus. I am referring to decimals, fractions, and percentages. Isn't it frightening that 38% of our seniors do not have these elementary math skills? When you consider that in Europe students in the 7th grade are learning Calculus are you still surprised that we are losing jobs? Right now the United States has the lowest science and math scores in the industrialized world. Since science and math drive technology, and technology drives the economy, can you now see why our economic problems are directly linked to these statistics? Yes these are terrible statistics, but it gets even worst in college.

Did you know that 50% of students in four year colleges fail to graduate? Did you know that the average four year college student who does graduate now takes on average six years to complete their studies? And the Federal Education Department is projecting it will take an average four year college student eight years to complete their studies in another three years from now. Many of these drop outs left college because of the difficulties they experienced with college level reading comprehension.

Finally, did you know that 70% of students in two year colleges fail to graduate? That's right only 30% of two year college students actually graduate. If you were a parent and you thought getting your student into college was a challenge, then guess what? You were wrong. Getting your student a diploma is far more challenging. If you are student and you thought getting into college was the real challenge. Then you were wrong too!

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