Leading article: Kill the televisions

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It is a frightening statistic. Forty per cent of children aged four and under have their own television sets in their bedrooms, according to the National Literacy Trust. Small wonder, then, that teachers are having to devote more of their time to instilling speaking and listening skills into today's children when they start school. The Basic Skills Agency therefore deserves support for its "talk to me" campaign. It wants schools to spend more time talking to parents about the need to engage their children in conversation. Persuading them to get rid of those personal TVs for the under-fours would be a step in the right direction.