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CBI responds to Sir Michael Wilshaw's speech on literacy levels among young people

The CBI responded to last week's speech by Sir Michael Wilshaw, Chief Inspector of Schools, on literacy levels among young people.

Neil Carberry, CBI Director for Employment and Skills policy, said:

“Businesses will welcome the fact that Sir Michael Wilshaw has shone a light on worryingly low literacy levels. We need to ensure functional literacy skills are taught more effectively.

“It’s concerning that so many young children fail to reach the expected standard by age 11, and last year more than a quarter of a million fell below the benchmark of a grade C in GCSE English.

“Being literate is essential to work and everyday life. Employers need staff to be able to perform simple tasks, such as extracting information effectively from basic texts, or being able to write coherently.”

CBI research shows that around a fifth of employers had to provide remedial literacy training to school leavers joining their organisation: /media-centre/press-releases/2011/05/poor-standards-of-english-and-maths-among-school-leavers-could-hinder-growth-cbi-edi/

Notes to Editors:

The CBI is the UK's leading business organisation, speaking for some 240,000 businesses that together employ around a third of the private sector workforce. With offices across the UK as well as representation in Brussels, Washington, Beijing and Delhi the CBI communicates the British business voice around the world.

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