Having poor literacy and social skills, can have a profound effect on educational life chances, employability and social cohesion. The difference in achievement can be seen in children as young as 22 months, and the gap gets wider the older they get. However, we also know that involvement in learning has an influence on the level of individual resilience to setbacks and stress, on feelings of wellbeing and the extent to which people feel in control of their lives.
Poor literacy is the tip of the iceberg. We need to understand the less-visible factors underneath and how the patterns of influence on individual lives can be harnessed to raise literacy achievement for all.