26 Nov 2015 | 08:32 am | 1 min. read
International law firm Pinsent Masons is taking action to help tackle the literacy challenge in the UK.
Pinsent Masons has signed the Vision for Literacy Business Pledge 2016, which was launched in November 2015 by the National Literacy Forum, a coalition led by the National Literacy Trust and supported by KPMG. The pledge underlines the commitment of the UK business community to raise literacy levels by taking action in three specific areas: in their workforce, in their local area and at a national level.
As low literacy continues to undermine the UK’s economic competitiveness, tackling it has never been more important to business. National Literacy Forum partner KPMG estimates that a failure to master basic literacy skills costs the taxpayer up to £2.5 billion every year.
To fulfil the pledge and help to improve literacy, Pinsent Masons is working with partner schools in Birmingham, Leeds, London, Manchester and Scotland. The programme was initiated thirteen years ago and represents a long-term commitment to improving academic achievement through literacy, numeracy and careers mentoring and staff and governor training. 12 schools are supported through Pinsent Masons' programme, reaching over 600 students a year.
Low literacy is frequently intergenerational and in some disadvantaged areas of the UK up to 35% of the adult population lack the literacy skills expected of an 11 year-old. This compromises employability, health, confidence and happiness and creates barriers to social mobility. Pinsent Masons’ work as part of the Vision for Literacy Business Pledge 2016 also supports the goals of other high profile literacy campaigns including Read On. Get On. and the Fair Education Alliance.
Richard Foley, Senior Partner at Pinsent Masons said:
“We believe that it is vital to support young people in gaining the key skills which will help them to find a route into employment and we are proud to support the initiative through our School Partnerships programme.”
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