Turn a Page, Dads Urged

Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England), December 6, 2005 | Go to article overview

Turn a Page, Dads Urged


Byline: By Gareth Deighan

Dads in Newcastle rarely read to their children, according to new research.

Hectic schedules and long working hours mean fewer than one in five Newcastle dads read to their children, the National Literacy Trust and the Starbucks coffee chain claim.

This is despite 78% of parents saying they believe it is important to read to their children on a regular basis.

Around 22% of fathers questioned said that they did not get home from work until after their children had gone to bed, while 16% said they are too busy with other activities to dedicate their time to storytelling.

But father-of-two Fraser Suddick, of Carlisle Close, Newcastle, says reading to his children has become part of their nightly routine.

The 34-year-old manager said: "I coach under-16s football sometimes and that means I'm not in, but when I am I never miss a night's reading.

"I think the school my two are at plays a big role in that. Holystone School really encourages children to read at night and for the parents to get involved, but I'm happy to do it.

"I'm shocked to hear only 20% of dads read to their children. But maybe over the whole area it's a fair reflection of dads up here. But it's not like me."

The National Literacy Trust also says girls are significantly more likely than boys to be enthusiastic about reading

And it believes schemes to improve boys' educational achievement and reading would benefit from increased involvement from fathers and other significant male figures. …

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