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NCTE Position Statement

Resolution on Federal Support for Programs in English and Reading

1971 NCTE Annual Business Meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada

Background

The improvement of the teaching of reading has been a major concern in American education in recent years. Nevertheless, the national efforts to create a literate population suffer from misplaced priorities and a narrow view of the needs for research in reading.

For example, reorganization of the U.S. Office of Education has favored funding of programs with general education emphasis such as innovation, drug abuse education, and environmental education at the expense of specific school subjects, such as reading and English. Research in early reading and remediation has been consistently funded, but broader concerns in reading research—for example, affective aspects of reading instruction and reading in the content areas—have not received adequate attention. Be it therefore

Resolution

Resolved, that the National Council of Teachers of English encourage a higher order of priority support for the teaching of English and reading;

     that the Council urge the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare and the Commissioner of Education to support undergraduate and advanced programs in the teaching of reading within the ten percent of the commissioner's budget over which he has discretionary authority;

     that the Council urge the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare; the Commissioner of Education; the proposed National Institutes of Education; and other funding agencies to give priority to research and programs emphasizing enjoyment through reading as well as ability to read; and

     that the Council urge the Commissioner of Education; the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare; the proposed National Institutes of Education; and other funding agencies to give priority to research and programs emphasizing improvement of reading in the content areas and that it invite the cooperative efforts of organizations representing other disciplines.

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