John Cowan: > Tom Tadfor Little scripsit: > > > I appreciate [English orthography] as it is myself. The rationale for > > changing it is usually to help learners (and with the steady rise of > > English-as-second-language in the world's population, this is a very > > significant matter). > > There is also a hidden cost: English-speakers spend about 12-18 months > extra learning to read and write (especially read) their language. > That involves one of two choices: start early (not the best thing from > an early childhood ed perspective), or remain permanently behind. And even for those children who at a very young age are keen to learn to read, they still irrecoverably lose 12-18 months' worth of reading and the education and pleasure that would follow from that. Since I became a parent I have changed from being a strong supporter of standard English orthography to coming to view it as a form of child-abuse. In the english-speaking world there is given over to trying to help children learn English spelling a vast academic--educational-- political apparatus and concomitant economic resources that are simply absent from most other cultures (though Japanese and, I presume, Chinese, seem to be at least as bad) because they are simply unnecessary. --And.