15th anniversary of Family Literacy Day

Yesterday, January 27, was the 15th anniversary of Family Literacy Day.

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- Press release published yesterday. -

Family literacy activities contribute to Canada's success

TORONTO, Jan. 27, 2013 / CNW / - Provincial and territorial education ministers today join parents and children across Canada in celebrating the 15thanniversary of Family Literacy Day.

Launched in 1999 by ABC Alpha for Life Canada, Family Literacy Day promotes family reading activities and encourages parents and children in Canada to take advantage of family time to learn together. Activities and events are organized for families in schools, libraries and communities across the country. To mark the 15the birthday, ABC Alpha for Life Canada invites families to take "15 minutes of fun" to learn together every day.

This year's celebration comes just weeks after the very encouraging news on literacy and families in Canada was announced. The results of the International Research Program in School Reading (PIRLS) were released on December 11, 2012 and show that parents in Canada are among those most involved in literacy-related activities with their preschool children. In addition, compared to almost all of the other countries in the study, Canadian students say they enjoy reading, a factor that also has a positive effect on their reading scores.

PIRLS assessed the reading skills of more than 325,000 students in 4year of 45 countries and economies. Canada is among the 10 participating countries with the highest scores, with students scoring 548, which is significantly higher than the median value of 500 on the PIRLS scale. PIRLS, which is coordinated by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement, is currently the only international assessment program that measures the reading skills of primary school students.

"The PIRLS results confirm that parents in Canada are doing a great job of fostering a culture of literacy at home," said Mme Ramona Jennex, President of CMEC and Minister of Education for Nova Scotia. “After all, parents and educators are the first teachers of children. They open up the world of language to them and promote their individual and social development. I know I speak on behalf of all education ministers when I say how happy I am to honor their role today. "

Literacy remains an integral part of the functions of CMEC. It is closely linked to various programs and activities, including official language learning, learning assessment, international engagement, and early childhood learning and development.

In 2013, the literacy-related activities in which CMEC will participate include:

  • the publication in October 2013 of the first results of the OECD flagship assessment on adult skills and learning, the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies, which will give Canadians one of the portraits the most comprehensive ever on adult skills in Canada, including literacy;
  • the publication in December 2013 of the results of the Program for International Student Assessment of the OECD for 2012, which will focus on the mathematical skills of 15-year-old students, but also on their reading, science and solving skills of problems.

About CMEC

Founded in 1967, CMEC gives Canada's ministers of education a collective voice and enables them to exercise leadership in education at the pan-Canadian and international levels. The organization also helps provinces and territories exercise their exclusive jurisdiction over education. For more information, visit our website at www.cmec.ca.

SOURCE: Council of Ministers of Education, Canada

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