The kids can't write anymore

Every few months a newspaper makes an article about poor spelling performance in young students.

"15 years old writing as bad as 9 years old were writing 30 years ago" or similar stuff.

They throw a line or two at the study, then proceed to the standard political rant.

The right blames social media and public (aka leftist) schools not being strict enough, disregarding that private schools are having the same problemĀ¹.

The left blames social media and the gov (aka the right) not letting schools be good enough, disregarding that private schools are having the same problemĀ¹.

Some people sigh in confirmation of their favorite side, a few guys think to themselves that nobody should give a shit about how the children write.

Nobody seems interested in providing an explanation. And I can't be bothered to check online, speculating for myself is *always* so much more better.

Bancal hypothesis

It's because they write more, and in a different language. Not english, their own.

As time goes on, children get access to social media and chatrooms earlier.

There, they have a very isolated community. You can tell when you see it, because the language is off. Here's a few potential reasons I can come up with :

This community is where they will write. They talk with their parents, their teachers, and other people in everyday life. They only write for friends and social media.

Oral and written languages, even if similar, may not be necessarily bound together. Especially if they talk of different things with different persons.

New isolated community means new language, derived from their current one. As time goes on, children get in this community earlier, and this language grows more separate.

Then you make them pass tests for adult language. It is not, they only use it for exams, and they use their own multiple hours per day.

30 years ago, they were only writing for exams and notes. The written language had no identitary value, and was dedicated to school.

It's *obviously* going to make a difference in performance. By "obviously" I mean I have no data.

We already said prescriptivism was nonsense.

Journalists should know that, this is pure political BS, I'm tired of everything.

This is the trouble we're skipping on by forcing children to write like adults :

This is what we're spending on it :

Teaching to read and write is not the same as enforcing a specific language. Hit me with a study that shows kids are failing to understand things written by normal humans. Not with arbitrary scores at writing like dead-ass authors.

I'm tired of everything.


1. Not always as much, sure, but you still have to explain the effect. At equal funding and strictness, the same school gets worst over time. No, you can't just decide that strictness changed.