(PRWEB) August 16, 2006
The Simplified Spelling Society (est. 1908) point to a staggering 50% of English speakers as having spelling problems (most acutely a problem in A Level examinations and job applications) and suggest that simplification is the answer to the problem as it has been in other major languages.
In languages utilising phonetic spelling children learn to spell in half the time of their UK counterparts. Chairman of the Simplified Spelling Society Jack Bovill says; ‘there are no spelling lessons in Spain, Korea, Turkey or Sweden.’
The SSS are sparking membership interest with parents of young children by suggesting that with simplified spelling working alongside traditional forms, children would learn far more quickly and illiteracy rates would drop with the acceptance of alternative spellings.
Unlike other European languages English spelling hasn’t undergone any significant reform for 1,000 years. There are at least 3500 commonly used English words which are spelt unpredictably. German has 800, Spanish 600 and Italian a mere 400 – the SSS point to this being the reason why Italian children lean to read in a couple of months and write well after just two years at school. Whereas a quarter of English speaking kids cannot read properly by age 11 and around 7 million in the UK and 40 million in the US are functionally illiterate.
Email and Text Messaging are leading the changes in English spelling. The use of phonetics has now become the norm within the body of text and email messaging; updating the English language in much the same way set out in the aims and objectives of the Simplified Spelling Society (SSS).
As the SSS move towards their centenary in 2008 their drive to publicise the unnecessary difficulties of English spelling and the benefits that its simplification would bring about are gaining an unlikely boost from texters and emailers across the nation. The enthusiasm for texting is proving that English speakers are frustrated with conventional spelling.
Speaking on behalf of the Society, Chairman Jack Bovill says, "I want to avoid getting into the nitty gritty of the argument and instead to look at how a few current spellings, used in text, could easily be adopted so that students aren’t penalised in exams’ by those words. This would not stop traditionalist from using older forms, such as we might with shew and grey, rather than show and gray. I'm keen for people to join us at http://www.spellingsociety.org."
Those in favor http://www.spellingsociety.org of simplified spelling say children would learn faster. Opponents say a new system would make spelling even more confusing.
THe Simplified Spelling Society funded the 'enuf is enuf' campaigner dressed as a Bee at last years American Spelling B championships.
Press Contact: Vikki Rimmer 01322866293