Several factors generally influence reading performance, among them the
relevance of content, the prior knowledge of the reader, including attitudes,
habits, and experiences acquired under certain socio-economic conditions, the interests of the reader and the readability level of the text in terms of
structure and syntax.
This paper is divided into three sections corresponding to the three
essential aspects of the reading process: the reader, the text, and the situation.
Profiles of ‘typical’ junior secondary students and texts are covered in parts
one and two, while a discussion of the classroom—teacher-community situation is covered in the third part followed by some recommendations to rectify some of the problems described.