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PIA Press Release

Davao hits functional literacy rate of 77.8%

By Rose B. Palacio

Davao City (20 December) -- Eight out of ten Filipinos are functionally literate while nine out of ten are basically literate.

This observation was evident in the results of the 2003 Functional Literacy, Education and Mass Media Survey (FLEMMS) released by the National Statistics Office (NSO), said NSO XI Director Virgilio Fusilero.

The survey showed that 2.8 million (77.8%) of Davaoenos ages 10-64 are functionally literate, 73.7% of which are males while 82.2% are females.

Moreover, almost 3 million (90.3%) Davaoenos are basically literate. Eighty-eight percent are males and 92.7% are females.

In the Philippines, 57.6 million are functionally literate; however basic literacy is higher with almost 62 million or 93.4%.

Functional literacy is the ability of the person to, not only read and write but to do simple arithmetical skills as well.

Basic literacy is the ability of the individual to read and write with understanding, in any language or dialect.

The survey also showed that 11.6 million (34%) of the 34 million Filipinos ages 6-24 are not attending school. Reasons cited in the survey are (in this order): employment/looking for work, lack of personal interest, high cost of education, housekeeping, illness/disability, inability to cope up with school work, distance of the school, there are no schools in the barangay and the lack of regular transportation.

The Functional Literacy, Education and Mass Media Survey (FLEMMS) is a national survey conducted by the NSO.

It gathers information on basic and functional literacy of Filipinos in the country. The survey also determines the educational and skills qualifications of the populace and their exposure to the mass media.

Data obtained from the survey are used as basis for formulating new policies and programs in order to improve the quality of education in the country.

FLEMMS was first conducted in 1989. The second survey was in 1994. The latest was done in 2003. (PIA-XI) [top]

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