When handwritten essays were introduced on the SAT exams for the class of 2006, just 15 percent of the almost 1.5 million students wrote their answers in cursive. The rest? They printed. Block letters.
I'll take neat printing over sloppy cursive any day, and -- take it from a guy who's graded a lot of bluebooks -- nearly all the cursive you see is sloppy. It's hard to find someone under 70 with nice, traditional penmanship.
Is it a loss that people don't have beautiful cursive? In the abstract, maybe, but kids have lots of more important stuff to learn.