Published date:7 Sep 2011
Press Statement by
Senator Jillian van Turnhout, Children’s Rights Alliance
“On International Literacy Day, with one in six children in Ireland having poor literacy skills, the Children’s Rights Alliance calls on Government to sufficiently resource the National Literacy and Numeracy Strategy to ensure its full and timely implementation. The Alliance has already broadly welcomed the Literacy Strategy, launched in July, which took into account the five key challenges pinpointed by the Alliance back in January, including meaningful targets, more time spent teaching literacy skills and a clear and comprehensive policy on literacy for ALL children. The Government has made it clear that literacy is their priority: to continue the good work, solid implementation and action is now needed on this Literacy Strategy, together with sufficient resources.
“The Alliance believes that literacy is a right for all children and not a mere privilege for some; enshrined in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is the right to education, ratified by Ireland in 1992. Literacy is the cornerstone of a ‘smart economy’ and focusing resources on basic writing and reading skills is not only the right thing to do but will reap rewards for the future.”
Senator Jillian van Turnhout
For further information, please contact:
Carys Thomas, Communications Director
Tel: (01) 662 9400 / 087 7702845; Fax: (01) 662 9355
Notes to Editor:
1. Article 28 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child: “States Parties recognise the right of the child to education, and with a view to achieving this right progressively and on the basis of equal opportunity.”
2. The Alliance issued a submission to the last Government in late January on its Draft National Literacy Plan to Improve Literacy and Numeracy in Schools: http://www.childrensrights.ie/files/CRA-LiteracySubDES310111.pdf
3.The Alliance’s Report Card 2011 is an audit of Government successes and failures in relation to its own targets and commitments to children. Published in January 2011, the last government was awarded a ‘C minus’ grade for its policy implementation of child literacy and language support. Go to: http://bit.ly/n7ejUr and pages 13-15.