Airplane noise affects child reading skills
3 June 2005, AMSTERDAM — Children at primary schools located near airports cannot read as well as other pupils and have poorer concentration skills, the government public health institute RIVM said.
3 June 2005
AMSTERDAM — Children at primary schools located near airports cannot read as well as other pupils and have poorer concentration skills, the government public health institute RIVM said.
RIVM also said on Friday the noise from car traffic disturbs pupils less than the noise from planes.
On average, nine percent of students are poor readers, but around Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, there are 50 to 3,000 children who cannot read as well as children from other schools.
This amounts to a maximum of 2.5 percent extra students who perform badly on reading exams.
Despite the "relatively small" effect of airplane noise, the RIVM said the results were important. It said the research demonstrates for the first time that airplane noise has an effect on child learning.
The research also involved investigating the effect of vehicle traffic noise and concluded that this type of noise did not have a negative affect on learning.
Pupils in vehicle noisy areas also scored on average better in concentration tests, while children at schools located in airplane flight paths made more mistakes.
RIVM tested students from schools around Schiphol, Heathrow Airport in London and Barajas Airport in Madrid. Some 2,844 children aged nine and 10 participated in the study.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]
Subject: Dutch news