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Reading action plan launched for primary schools

06/03/2015 Kelly
The government has launched a new action plan aimed at raising reading standards in primary schools.

Up to 200 schools will be given the support to set up book clubs and promote library membership, helping to inspire pupils to develop a love of literature.

New resources are to be provided to help primary teachers introduce poetry recitation to their pupils at an early age, while extra funding will extend the national poetry recitation competition, Poetry by Heart.

In addition, all primary schools are being urged to arrange library membership for their year 3 pupils.

According to the latest figures, a record proportion of children (89 per cent) reached the expected standard of reading at age 11 (key stage 2).

However, the government says that, despite this progress, one in five pupils still leaves primary school underprepared for secondary education.

School reform minister Nick Gibb said: "Nothing is more important than ensuring every child can read well. Poor reading can hold people back throughout their adult lives, preventing them from achieving their full potential.

"[These] measures ... are designed to build on the progress made so far and help primary schools in the vital role they play in driving up literacy standards across England."

The government has implemented a number of reforms aimed at raising reading standards, many of which are focused on phonics.

It has strengthened the requirement in primary schools to teach children to read through systematic synthetic phonics, as the evidence shows this is the most effective method.

A phonics screening test has been introduced at the age of six, which has so far enabled teachers to identify nearly 568,000 six-year-olds who needed extra support.

Some £23.7 million of match funding has been given to over 14,000 primary schools to boost phonics teaching, enabling them to buy systematic synthetic phonics products and training.

Posted by Harriet McGowanADNFCR-2164-ID-801778620-ADNFCR
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