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Happy International Literacy Day!

September 9, 2013

On September 8, 1967, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) first celebrated International Literacy Day. Since it fell on a Sunday this year, many organizations are observing it today. Read something! Write something! Read something aloud to someone else! Celebrate the fact that if you’re reading this, you are privileged to be able to read and write. To those of us who work in literacy education, and to many many many others, literacy is not just a privilege—it is a right. Worldwide, illiterate people are disproportionately women and girls. Far too many are still deprived of their right to learn how to read and write. International Literacy Day brings attention to this critical issue. “Literacy is at the heart of basic education for all, and essential for eradicating poverty, reducing child mortality, curbing population growth, achieving gender equality and ensuring sustainable development, peace and democracy.” Hard to think of a better way to spend today (and every day) than working toward global literacy and celebrating all we have achieved through the written word.

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