Teen Writing Skills in a Tech World (page 2)

Teen Writing Skills in a Tech World

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Updated on Jun 3, 2008

At first glance, having nearly three-fourths of students acquire Basic writing skills seems like a coup, but some question whether that's good enough, when, in his own statement, Schneider commented, "Ultimately, the goal is to have all students performing at or above the Proficient level."   Clearly that's not happening. Only one-third of all 8th graders and one-fourth of all 12th graders demonstrated Proficiency--a percentage that hasn't changed significantly since the last administration of the NAEP. There also continue to be significant gaps in scores between genders and socio-economic groups. On average, girls tend to score a full 20 points higher than boys, and students who qualify for free lunch have an average 25 points less than their non-eligible counterparts.

While it's encouraging to know that America's students are continuing to learn effective written communication skills, according to Kati Haycock, President of The Education Trust, the increases are encouraging, but not encouraging enough. In a press release, she noted, "In a world that gets smaller, more competitive and more diverse every day, Basic just doesn’t cut it. It doesn’t get kids where they need to go, and it doesn’t get our country where we need go." 

In the end, though, students are showing improvement in an academic arena many fear is being overtaken by an electronic world. Proof that contradicts that fear is, in itself, encouraging.

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