Basic Literacy

What is Basic Literacy?

Basic Literacy is the ability to read, write, and comprehend. It includes proper diction as well as grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

Why does Basic Literacy Matter? (statistics taken from

  • Only 48% of parents read to their preschoolers daily.
  • Thirteen percent of Pennsylvanians lack basic literacy skills such as the ability to read a newspaper or brochure. This percentage of Pennsylvanians who struggle with basic literacy remains unchanged from 1992.
  • More than 75% of jobs in Pennsylvania – three jobs out of four – demand education beyond high school. And yet, nearly 120,000 Pennsylvania youth ages 16-24 have dropped out of high school.
  • Fifty percent of the nation’s unemployed youth ages 16-21 are functional illiterates with virtually no prospects of obtaining good jobs.

How does the Library support Basic Literacy?

  • Storytimes for babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and families
  • Summer Reading Club
  • Grade One at the Library
  • 1000 Books Before Kindergarten
  • Book Groups
  • Writing Groups
  • Author Visits
  • And more!