Closer to home at the Poly, we even have a few people knowledgeable in alternative ways of thinking about literacy - particularly centered around a person's readiness to develop such skills.. Steiner.. or Postman's "Crap Detectors".. but such alternative thinking was long ago absent from our educated discussions..
Meanwhile, we the teachers of today, with our self assured yet precarious confidence and government mandates, devise measurement sticks to use on people we class as "learners", a stick that will tell them what we think we already knew - you are illiterate or you are literate. We don't dare measure ourselves, that's for sure, certainly not with any contemporary measure.
I'm just finished reading a post about this thing termed 21st Century Literacy.. and while it takes a broad brush, it perhaps (perhaps not) will stimulate a more self conscious consideration of what we deem as worth measuring in terms of literacy and numeracy:
An Operating System for the Mind
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