Parents worry about Global Competition - but not enough to take Action

    TORONTO, June 9 /CNW/ - Increased competition for scholarships and jobs
is a concern for most Canadian parents when considering their child's future.
    According to an online survey conducted by Ipsos-Reid for Kumon Math and
Reading Centres, 92% of parents agree that "In our modern, global village,
greater competition means we have to be that much more prepared to enter the
workforce", and 86% of parents agree that, "It's even more important for my
child to excel in order to compete for scholarships."
    This concern exists regardless of the academic performance of the child.
Parents who identify their child as average or above average compared to
classmates express a similar level of concern as parents who identify their
child as below average.
    But when it comes to taking action, it is mostly the parents who identify
their child as below average academically who are doing something to assist
their child. 65% of parents who indicate their child is behind his or her
classmates say their child is receiving modified instruction within school, or
supplemental assistance outside of school.
    At the other end of the spectrum, most parents who identify their child
as achieving above their classmates say that their child is not receiving any
modified instruction in school or supplemental education. This is somewhat
surprising given that over half of these parents agree that their child needs
some assistance in uncovering his or her true potential and that the school
system is too inflexible to accommodate the learning needs of all the children
in the classroom.
    Dr. Donna McGhie-Richmond, education specialist for Kumon Math and
Reading Centres explains, "Some parents still think of supplemental education
as remedial education to address a shortfall in student knowledge or skill.
However, this view is changing rapidly." Last November, the Canadian Council
on Learning reported that the majority of parents who engage in supplemental
education have children with grades of B and higher. "This corroborates a
trend witnessed at Kumon for some time now, where students are enrolling for
enrichment and aiming to work at an advanced level beyond what they might be
doing at school," says Dr. McGhie-Richmond. Indeed, over 25% of Kumon students
are working at an advanced level in math and reading programs and 52% are
working at or above grade level.
    Supplemental education such as Kumon assists average and above average
level students to: (1) prepare for the increasing demands inherent at each
grade level, and post-secondary education; (2) learn important study skills,
and (3) value hard work and challenges.
    "At college and university and even high school, the pace of learning
increases steeply. Students who have not developed good study habits and the
ability to overcome challenges may struggle to adjust. It is often the
students who are accustomed to performing well with little effort who find
this adjustment most difficult," says Dr. McGhie-Richmond.
    Bottom line - the 'right' supplemental education can't hurt and indeed
can help to give your child that competitive edge.

    Ipsos-Reid Survey Methodology

    These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted exclusively on
behalf of Kumon Canada from March 7 to May 12 2008. This online survey of 1280
Canadian parents of children aged 6 to 15, inclusive, was conducted via the
Ipsos I-Say Online Panel, Ipsos Reid's national online panel. The results are
based on a sample where quota sampling and weighting are employed to balance
demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the
actual Canadian population according to Census data. Quota samples with
weighting from the Ipsos online panel provide results that are intended to
approximate a probability sample. An unweighted probability sample of this
size, with a 100% response rate, would have an estimated margin of error of
+/- 2.7 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

    About Kumon Math and Reading Centers

    Kumon (koo-mon) is an after-school math and reading program. Celebrating
its 50th anniversary in 2008, the learning method uses a systematic
individualized approach that helps children develop a solid command of math
and reading skills. Through daily practice and mastery of materials, students
increase confidence, improve concentration and develop better study skills.
Kumon has 26,000 centres in 44 countries and more than four million students
studying worldwide. Kumon Canada is headquartered in Vaughan, Ontario. To
learn more visit or call 1-800-ABC-MATH

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/

For further information:

For further information: Daniel Wooster, Kumon Canada Inc., (416)
490-1434 ext. 265,

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Kumon Canada Inc.

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