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Posted: 9/9/2004 10:17:57 PM EST
HOLEEE SHIT!

I will be SO glad to pull the face curtain and bail out of this asylum.


www.dailynews.com/Stories/0,1413,200~20954~2388909,00.html??&1

Illiteracy shockingly high in L.A.

Half of workers unable to read

By Rachel Uranga
Staff Writer

Continued immigration and a stubborn high school dropout rate have stymied efforts to improve literacy in Los Angeles County, where more than half the working-age population can't read a simple form, a report released Wednesday found.

Alarmingly, only one in every 10 workers deemed functionally illiterate is enrolled in literacy classes and half of them drop out within three weeks, said the study by the United Way of Greater Los Angeles.

"It's an emergency situation," said Mayor James Hahn, adding that poor literacy rates could jeopardize the region's economy by driving out high-tech businesses and other industries that pay well.

In the Los Angeles region, 53 percent of workers ages 16 and older were deemed functionally illiterate, the study said.

That percentage dropped to 44 percent in the greater San Fernando Valley -- which includes Agoura Hills and Santa Clarita -- but soared to 85 percent in some pockets of the Valley.


The study measured levels of literacy across the region using data from the 2000 Census, the U.S. Department of Education and a survey of literacy programs taken from last September to January.

It classified 3.8 million Los Angeles County residents as "low-literate," meaning they could not write a note explaining a billing error, use a bus schedule or locate an intersection on a street map.

And despite hundreds of millions of dollars spent in public schools over the past decade to boost literacy rates, functional illiteracy levels have remained flat because of a steady influx of non-English-speaking immigrants and a 30 percent high school dropout rate, authors of the report said.

The last available national study was conducted in 1992 by the National Adult Literacy Survey, which found that 48 percent of the nation's working-age population was functionally illiterate.

"This is a ticking time bomb, a dirty secret we don't want to talk about. We are losing the battle," said Mark Drummond, chancellor of California's community college system.

Dozens of community-based groups, including the Literacy Network of Greater Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Unified School District and other public agencies vowed to improve programs over the next five years by connecting English learners with employers and educating 1,000 workers with English-language deficiencies during the next two years.

A top priority should be making classes more accessible. For example, the report found that no school in the county offered Saturday classes or tailored classes for adult students with families or multiple jobs.

And while nearly 90 percent of adults take literacy classes to improve their employment opportunities, only 30 percent of literacy programs include the workplace in their instruction.

"It's appalling," said Marge Nichols, the author of the study. "A 50 percent dropout rate (for literacy classes) is pretty dysfunctional. We haven't kept up."

Though the report offers no estimate for the cost of functional illiteracy, the National Right to Read Foundation places the price tag nationally at $224 billion. And local observers say untold millions are being lost by would-be employers who move to other cities in search of highly skilled workers.

Before he enrolled in a literacy class at the North Valley Occupational Center, Adolio Gonzales, 29, was intimidated by filling out job applications or even going to an amusement park.

"I didn't want to go to Disneyland because I thought it was so complicated," said the Reseda resident, who waits tables at a Carrows restaurant and wants to become a computer programmer.

Gonzales emigrated from Guatemala seven years ago and taught himself to speak English by watching television programs.

But he often found himself confused by the simplest task, and had trouble filling out an application at a fast-food restaurant two years ago.

"The application asked why I wanted to work for this company and I didn't know what to answer," he said.

Then, he enrolled in the literacy class, which emphasizes the basics, like filling out forms and reading the newspaper.

"I feel comfortable now, like I can do anything.
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 10:18:46 PM EST
Que?
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 10:30:29 PM EST
Don't ask me - I'm IN Santa Clarita.
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 10:33:46 PM EST
Where's your Green Card Amigo's?
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 10:38:22 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/9/2004 10:38:41 PM EST by Lightning_P38]
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:26:23 AM EST
The big problem isn't immigration so much as that the people coming in are illiterate in their own language. There must not be much schooling available for poor people in Mexico.

GunLvr
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:28:39 AM EST
This is actually good news for those of us who CAN read. Less competition for the good jobs!

Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:35:48 AM EST
Why should they? they know the gov will give them everything they need!
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:49:58 AM EST

Originally Posted By Airwolf:
HOLEEE SHIT!

Continued immigration and a stubborn high school dropout rate have stymied efforts to improve literacy in Los Angeles County, where more than half the working-age population can't read a simple form, a report released Wednesday found.


In the Los Angeles region, 53 percent of workers ages 16 and older were deemed functionally illiterate, the study said.

The last available national study was conducted in 1992 by the National Adult Literacy Survey, which found that 48 percent of the nation's working-age population was functionally illiterate.



First of all the data is for Los Angeles not the State of California. I know you are excited to leave the state but that is a signicant difference.

Secondly, based on the numbers presented in the article, Los Angeles has a 53% overall illiteracy rate while the last national study had the whole country at 48%. A 5% difference. That is not too bad when you consider how many foreign people in L.A. are unable to speak English very well. That is just not Spanish. I cant tell you how many nights at my work I have to find translators for anything from Armenian to Thai. It would be interesting to see a new national study to see if the national numbers changed any.




functional illiteracy levels have remained flat because of a steady influx of non-English-speaking immigrants


And this is Californias fault? I am still waiting for the Feds to get off their asses and secure the borders.

This article makes me weary. It's like someone is getting ready to ask the state for some money and is drumming up the PR machine.



Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:50:19 AM EST
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 6:45:08 AM EST

Originally Posted By GunLvrPHD:
The big problem isn't immigration so much as that the people coming in are illiterate in their own language. There must not be much schooling available for poor people in Mexico.

GunLvr



the people in the Philippines are poor but they have a good education and high literacy, most people over there already speak English fluently, I think it's because the Filipinos value an education more than the Mexicans?
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 6:47:11 AM EST
So THATs why Fienstein keeps getting elected.....
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 6:53:50 AM EST
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 6:54:58 AM EST

Originally Posted By Thunderbolt:

Originally Posted By GunLvrPHD:
The big problem isn't immigration so much as that the people coming in are illiterate in their own language. There must not be much schooling available for poor people in Mexico.

GunLvr



the people in the Philippines are poor but they have a good education and high literacy, most people over there already speak English fluently, I think it's because the Filipinos value an education more than the Mexicans?



No the difference is that in the US we foster the idea that we will cater to you, i.e. speak your language instead of English. There is no insentive to speak English when you can get by with your native language. This is why they will stay poor. It's the Libby's way of keeping their low wage workers.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 10:06:19 AM EST

Originally Posted By Thunderbolt:

Originally Posted By GunLvrPHD:
The big problem isn't immigration so much as that the people coming in are illiterate in their own language. There must not be much schooling available for poor people in Mexico.

GunLvr



the people in the Philippines are poor but they have a good education and high literacy, most people over there already speak English fluently, I think it's because the Filipinos value an education more than the Mexicans?



Actually, Mexico's literacy rate is above 90% also. I think we are getting all the illiterate ones sneaking over the border. Does that suprise anyone?
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 10:16:12 AM EST
Don't need to read to pick 'maters; the problem is, they aren't working at anything except gathering in the generous welfare provided by American gringos and the drug industry.
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