Why are British school children's literacy and numeracy skills so poor?

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Do Rihanna and Katie Prices' Twitter accounts prove we've all become lazy illiterates?

exam results and students sitting exam

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According to a shocking new survey of worldwide reading, writing and numeracy skills, students in the UK have some of the lowest scores in the developed world.

In 2013 British students are worse at maths and English than their grandparents, despite massive emphasis on education, exams and adaptable learning techniques.

The report, by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, shows that our youngest generation may struggle to enter the job market and could potentially threaten our national ability to compete economically, scientifically and politically with other nations in the future.

The findings have also put recent exam results under the microscope - why are GCSE grades increasing when the average young person can't complete basic literacy and numeracy tasks?

Now, there are 8.5 million adults in England and Northern Ireland with the numeracy skills of a 10-year-old, while 16.4% of the population can only read simple books designed for primary school children.

So what's going on?

Well, one explanation could be the overwhelming increase of social media as a form of communication in the past ten years. Are kids dumbing themselves down to fit their thoughts into 140 characters instead of writing full sentences? And are we all too quick to jump to a calculator before trying to do sums in our heads?

When every teenager with a phone is being inundated with Instagram, Twitter and Facebook messages that ignore basic spelling and grammar rules, is it surprising that they can't use these skills themselves. It's all about practise right?

Let's just hope and pray that the youth of today aren't copying these celebrity spelling and grammar criminals. We know you've only got 140 characters folks, but this is just ridiculous...



Are you guilty of poor spelling and grammar online? Join the debate on Twitter #BritSkills

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