Latest figures show thousands of boys leave primary school ‘at least four years behind in reading’

More than 20,000 boys left primary school this summer with the reading skills of a seven-year-old or worse, according to official figures. This is from the Telegraph…

Seven per cent of 11-year-old boys will be starting secondary education with ability levels no better than those expected of the average infant, it was revealed.

Despite a record rise in results this year, figures showed that boys were almost twice as likely as girls to fail basic reading tests.

In all, some 20,300 boys were at Level 2 or below in reading – the standard normally expected after just two years of compulsory schooling – compared with 10,400 girls.

The disclosure comes amid concerns that a lack of male role models at home and school may be turning boys off reading at a young age.

Earlier this year, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Literacy warned that large numbers of boys were failing to develop a love of reading during primary education because of a shortage of male teachers combined with an anti-book culture among many fathers.

It was claimed that schools failed to stock adventure and action novels by authors such as Enid Blyton, Roald Dahl and J.R.R Tolkien that are significantly more likely to appeal to boys at a young age.

But the Government and teachers’ leaders praised the overall rise in primary school results registered this summer compared with 2011.

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