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Cyprus

Seven per cent of children at risk of illiteracy

Over 7 per cent of children about to enter secondary education are at risk of leaving school linguistically illiterate and 6.9 per cent mathematically illiterate, according to Volunteer Commissioner Yiannakis Yiannaki.

Yiannaki who issued a statement to mark International Literacy Day said that according to a survey by the Educational Research and Evaluation Centre (KEEA) in the school year 2015-2016, some 7.4% of pupils in primary education were at risk of remaining linguistically illiterate and 6.9 per cent mathematically illiterate.

“During the school year 2015-16 at third grade, 998 children (13 per cent) were identified with a high probability of becoming linguistically illiterate and 1,102 children (14.2 per cent) were identified with high probability to remain mathematically illiterate,” Yiannaki said.

“In relation to sixth graders, the survey showed that 7.4 per cent of students were identified as having a high probability of remaining linguistically illiterate and 6.9 per cent mathematically illiterate,” he added.

Yiannaki said the majority of those at risk were boys and pupils of foreign nationals who entered the school system at age 6.

“Voluntary and non-governmental organisations in our country offer children programmes which include educational and experiential workshops so that together with the ministry of we can try to prevent and address the phenomenon of illiteracy in our country,” he said.

More than 750 million people worldwide are illiterate, while about 250 million children in primary schools globally do not have basic literacy skills.

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