Literacy report released10 June 2016
FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government has been presented with the report The Power of Literacy – Moving towards New Brunswick’s Comprehensive Literacy Strategy, which contains recommendations to improve literacy rates in the province and foster a culture of lifelong learning.
“I offer my sincere thanks to the literacy co-chairs for their hard work and dedication to the development of a strategy and I thank all those who participated in the consultation process,” said Finance Minister Cathy Rogers, who is also minister responsible for literacy. “Our government recognizes the importance of literacy and wants to ensure that all New Brunswickers can foster lifelong learning and have access to the help they need in developing essential literacy skills.”
The provincial government established the New Brunswick Literacy Secretariat in the spring of 2015 and invited organizations and individuals to submit their ideas online and at regional consultation sessions. The co-chairs of the secretariat, Liane Roy and Marilyn Trenholme Counsell, have now presented 37 recommendations which were developed in consultation with stakeholders, literacy champions, employers, government representatives and New Brunswickers.
Some of the recommendations include:
- increasing supports for speech/language development with a primary focus on children up to three years old;
- empowering families with practical support for stronger literacy skills with their child/youth at each grade;
- enhancing the capacity of community-based adult learning organizations; and
- establishing a community literacy champion within each library region to serve as the coordinator of literacy at the community level.
“I believe that we have produced a report that will help address the literacy challenges we face in the short and long term,” said Trenholme Counsell. “I thank everyone who provided us with their valuable input which helped shape the proposed strategy.”
The recommendations will be instrumental in the development of the province’s comprehensive literacy strategy.
“Low literacy skills have a negative impact in the lives of children and adults and we want New Brunswick to be a place where lifelong learning is embraced and people of all ages have an opportunity to learn and thrive within the workforce and in their communities,” said Roy.
To further promote literacy, the provincial government recently announced that five public libraries will be open every day under a new pilot project.
The report is available online.