February 14th, 2011

The Reader: No Book Left Behind

Growing up in the impoverished South Bronx area of New York City, the many books I read easily became my safe haven. I was more than willing to get lost in the pages, rather than join the other children on the drug plagued playgrounds. Reading allowed me to travel into lands unknown and gave me an air of excitement that I openly shared through writing and conversation.

Just as it was back then, reading does not always seem like the cool thing to do for many children. When a child is always inside of a book, whether it be educational or recreational, they are not looked at as popular or cool by the other children. Although it should start in the younger years, every age group should read more independently as well as socially, because reading is the key to strengthening literacy skills. One’s quality of life heavily depends on it.

According to National Center for Education Statistics, literacy is the ability to use print and written information to function in society, in order to achieve one’s goals and to develop one’s knowledge and potential. As we all know, poor literacy rates have a domino effect on the American culture in present and future times. Forecasts predict that if static literacy levels continue, then by 2030 the entire Literacy Level distribution of the U.S. population will have decreased, creating an American workforce that is unequipped and unskilled to work in the demanding global market.

Presence and profit are two important premises that make America a major player in the global business scope. However, an adequate education is mostly unheard of in our public school systems. School closings, poor teacher retention and lack of resources are eating away at the core of society little by little. Urging people to continue their education is a start in the right direction. Unfortunately, a bachelor’s degree does not hold as much weight in the workforce as it did many years ago.

Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce has predicted that by 2018, 63 percent of all jobs will require at least some post secondary education. There will be a need for 22 million workers with post secondary degrees. Sadly enough, the report also shows that we will fall short by 3 million if there is not a dramatic change and that means 300,000 less college graduates in the next 7 years.

NPR contributor Maude Newton hit the nail on the head when she stated, “I’m not invested in how people read, it only matters that they read.” With social media weighing heavily on how books are written and published, it would only be fit that that we take these strategies into our classrooms.

Instead of sitting back and watching it fly, the technological wave should be taken advantage of in all aspects of education. By using modern technologies such as the Nook and Kindle, books not only become attractive, but more interactive. Laptops in the classroom was only the beginning of ensuring students were equipped with more than enough learning resources and skills to strive in society.

The phrase “Reading is fundamental” has been played over and over again, like a broken record. However, that does not take from its meaning and virtue. The promotion of books, whether it be hard cover or touch screen, is the key to developing the desire for success and self-assurance within our youth. Reading is a universal language that everyone should speak. It knows no boundaries and we should make sure that like every child, no book is left behind.

Photography by Que Duong

Styled by Marc Clark

Make up by La Quanna Chong

About the Author

Demaris Bailey
Demaris Bailey is an Editor for Socialtik Mag and public relations scholar from the Bronx, NY. Attending high school in suburban Massachusetts and a Historically Black University has helped her understand cultural boundaries and differences.



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  1. Great cause! Love the article and the movement! Needless to say, but the pictures are SUPER FLY!

  2. Awesome Read and the pictures were awesome. I hope this is a continuing piece on the site.

  3. Love this post! Socialtik never lets me down! and these pictures are fiyahhh! LOL Kudos to the team.

  4. This is a great cause and these pictures are amazing.

  5. It’s the first time to be happy to come here.

  6. Thanks for taking the time to write that, I found it very educational. If you get a chance you should visit my site as well. I hope you have a great day!

  7. these pictures are fiyahhh! LOL Kudos to the team.

  8. Thank you for another great article. Where else could anyone get that kind of information in such a perfect way of writing?

  9. I wish to give special thank for this useful content I really appreciate this wonderful post.Thanks!

  10. Thank you for the read. Honestly you covered the topic and broadly examined all areas. If i was to write this i would have done a few things differently myself but you have definitely inspired me to get into the world of blogging.

  11. Instructional post for me. I would like to add on that the books concept is the concept that is high interest for me. I thoroughly enjoyed the write up that is completely in detailed form.

  12. This is the first time i am reading your post and admire that you posted article which gives users lot of information regarding particular topic thanks for this share.

  13. Reading is empowering not only on the cognitive level but also to those people who find it hard to concentrate well may this work for you.

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