Basic Reading Skills

October 1975
Education Digest;Oct1975, Vol. 41 Issue 2, p67
This article reports that an improvement over the last three years in basic reading skills by 17- year-old students was announced by the U.S. National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), at the end of the 1974 school year. Materials compiled by NAEP for the National Right to Read Effort showed most change in those group performances that were the lowest in 1971. In-school 17-year-olds showed a gain of 2 percentage points over the 1971 performance. They did best at reading exercises involving pictures and drawings, second best in reading charts, maps, etc., and the lowest achievement was in the use of reference materials and forms. A breakdown on the 5,200 17- year-olds tested showed that children of professional parents in the big cities did the best and of unemployed or welfare parents in the big cities did the worst; that girls did better than boys; and that whites did better than blacks. Roy H. Forbes, NAEP director, pointed out that this assessment was only on the very basic reading skills essential for functioning in everyday life reading road signs, maps, advertisements, forms, and reference works.


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