Philadelphia City Hall
Here’s a stat that bears repeating till it sinks in: a whopping 36 million U.S. adults lack basic English literacy, per a 2015 report commissioned by the U.S. Department of Education.
That assessment of the situation, workforce implications aside, means a group of Americans equal to Canada’s entire population have difficulty accessing basic services like opening a bank account or navigating the country’s often complex health system.
Solving that problem through tech is the goal of the 108 teams around the world participating on XPRIZE Adult Literacy competition, and Philly’s playing a major part in it. Starting July 25, Philadelphians reading at a 3rd-grade level or below can get to try out literacy-focused mobile apps made by 10 or so of the contest semifinalists. The goal is to connect 3,500 people with one of the mobile apps.
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