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Eight Important Tweets on The Future of Adult Literacy

Thirty-six million Americans can’t read.

Low-literacy skills are directly linked to higher unemployment, less earned income and poor health. The result is a lack of social mobility and greater inequality for millions of families.

On June 8, the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy convened entrepreneurs, investors, technology leaders, futurists, visionaries, policy makers, and NGO’s to envision transformational ideas for the next 25 years of literacy.

Here are eight important ideas captured under the event’s #AdultEdu hashtag about the bold ideas and innovative thinking that can help alleviate our nation’s literacy crisis:

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Bushes honor success stories at Celebration of Reading

by Chris Umpierre
Lehigh Acres News Star
February 18, 2012

Like many migrant workers, Immokalee’s Maria Segura didn’t know how to read or speak English. Like her parents before her and their parents before them, the 43-year-old mother of four thought she would end up working the fields for the rest of her life.

Then she stepped into a Bush family literacy program, and everything changed.

A high school dropout, Segura learned to read, learned English, got her GED and in 2009 graduated from Southwest Florida College in Fort Myers. Today, she’s the lead preschool teacher at Immokalee’s Family Literacy Academy.

Former first lady Barbara Bush and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush celebrated Segura’s accomplishment as well as the thousands of people their foundation has helped at Friday night’s 12th annual Celebration of Reading at the Hyatt Regency in Bonita Springs.

The Bush family’s foundation has raised $42 million for 960 family literacy programs, but in a Friday panel discussion at Florida Gulf Coast University, education experts agreed more needs to be done.

About 90 million Americans struggle with literacy, a statistic that hasn’t changed in more than a decade. About 30 million of those people are caregivers of children younger than 8, according to the National Center for Family Literacy. The center’s president, Sharon Darling, said educators should expand prekindergarten opportunities and utilize the advance of smartphones to reach illiterate adults.

“We can do all we can to improve our institutions and we can get excellent charter schools, but until we think about educating illiterate adults, it’s like pushing on a rope,” Darling said. “We might get there, but it’s going to be a longer route.”

Jeb Bush, who announced Friday that he and his sister, Doro Bush Koch, will be taking over the reins of the Bush literacy program from their mother, hopes to

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