Nearly 10% boys struggle with reading

At the age of 11, almost 20,000 boys have the reading age of a seven-year-old


Once again, figures show that many boys in our primary and senior schools have a reading age way below their actual years.


Department of Education has released figures revealing that 9% of 11-year-old boys in state schools start secondary school with a reading age of seven or below. Girls do a bit better, but there are still 6% starting senior school with this low reading age.

Michael Gove, the education secretary, warned that the senior school curriculum would prove to be a “closed book” for children starting secondary school with a reading age of seven.

He announced that the Government will be introducing a test for all six year olds to try to identify at an early age those children who are struggling with the basics of reading.


The worst area is Nottingham, where 15% of 11-year-old boys have a low reading age (reading below ‘level three’). The government aims for children to leave primary school with reading level four. According to the Guardian, over the past 15 years, the proportion of pupils reaching level four has fallen dramatically from 81% to 49%.

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