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Literacy campaign

FRANCE:The Council of Ministers last week adopted measures to combat illiteracy, which affects nearly one French adult in 10.

Part of the government's anti-exclusion policy, they include monitoring the development of schoolchildren more closely, improved teacher training, measures to ensure earlier identification of factors associated with illiteracy and increased remedial action. A trial carried out in the Ile-de- France region showed that more than half the unemployed people identified as illiterate who accepted adapted training found work within three months, according to Veronique Esperandieu of the GPLI (Groupe permanent de lutte contre l'illetrisme).

President Jacques Chirac described illiteracy as "one of the most important aspects of the tragedy of exclusion, and the one least talked about". But the government is not spending to eradicate it: the programme will be funded through more efficient management of existing budgets.

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