Literacy statistics and juvenile court
85 percent of all juveniles who interface with the juvenile court system are functionally illiterate.
More than 60 percent of all prison inmates are functionally illiterate.
Penal institution records show that inmates have a 16% chance of returning to prison if they receive literacy help, as opposed to 70% who receive no help. This equates to taxpayer costs of $25,000 per year per inmate and nearly double that amount for juvenile offenders.
Illiteracy and crime are closely related. The Department of Justice states, "The link between academic failure and delinquency, violence, and crime is welded to reading failure." Over 70% of inmates in America's prisons cannot read above a fourth grade level.
Many of the USA ills are directly related to illiteracy. Just a few statistics:
Literacy is learned. Illiteracy is passed along by parents who cannot read or write.
One child in four grows up not knowing how to read.
43% of adults at Level 1 literacy skills live in poverty compared to only 4% of those at Level 5
3 out of 4 food stamp recipients perform in the lowest 2 literacy levels
90% of welfare recipients are high school dropouts
16 to 19 year old girls at the poverty level and below, with below average skills, are 6 times more likely to have out-of-wedlock children than their reading counterparts.
Low literary costs $73 million per year in terms of direct health care costs. A recent study by Pfizer put the cost much higher.
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