February 24, 2012

Illiteracy is EXPENSIVE

Did you ever consider the fact that low literacy rates might have a HUGE economic impact? Not just for the families who experience low literacy, but ALL of us. Check this out-

Low literate adults are more likely to: 1. Be involved in crime: 85% of juveniles in juvenile court are functionally non-literate 2. Be in poor health: Literacy level is the number one predictor of a person’s health status 3. Have children who drop out of school: Mother’s literacy level is the number one predictor of her kids’ achievement in school 4. Rely on public assistance: 50% of adults without GED or equivalent receive Temporary Assistance for the Needy.

It takes about $500 to get someone their GED. In the Austin area, adults who get their GED earn an average of $9,000 more annually. Not only will they earn more for their families, they will pay more taxes, rely less on public benefit programs, and stay in jobs and out of jail. I think most economists would say that that is a pretty good return on investment!

Now consider this- less than 4% of adults in our community who need a GED class has access to one. NOT SMART.

Do your community a big favor, and donate to a local adult literacy program now! You can find a list of area programs here:


And rest assured that between your donation, the Literacy Coalition's support services, and the courageous work of the professionals in these programs, we'll be doing our part to help our community have a stronger, healthier economy.

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