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Thousands invested to up literacy standards

Thousands invested to up literacy standards

Tuesday 19 November 2019

Thousands invested to up literacy standards


The States are investing an extra £300,000 in Guernsey's schools in an attempt to improve the standard of literacy.

The funding includes the recruitment of two literacy specialists to work with secondary school pupils, a better range of books and resources across all schools and increased funding for the Dyslexia Day Centre.

The additional investment has been announced following a recent report from the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture which indicated a decline in literacy standards and sparked a review into the matter.

"My committee is determined to provide the investment necessary to ensure the highest possible standards of literacy for the island's children and young people," said ESC President, Deputy Matt Fallaize. "Literacy is absolutely vital to allow children to make progress at school across almost every subject area and then as adults to participate fully in society and achieve their ambitions wherever they may lie."

matt_fallaize.jpg

Pictured: Deputy Matt Fallaize.

ESC has made the funds available from its cash limit budget agreed by the States.

"The committee recently directed the Education Office to work with all schools to carry out a deeper review of literacy standards and prepare any measure which could be put in place to deliver any improvements necessary and generally secure the highest possible standards," Deputy Fallaize continued. "This review is now underway and schools are being given the opportunity to shape the future strategy for high literacy standards.

"Initial findings indicate some clear priorities. I am very pleased the committee is able to respond decisively and allocate this significant additional funding. This will help to ensure there is no delay in putting measures in place for students to receive further support as quickly as possible."

The funding will allow the Dyslexia Day Centre to start working with children from a younger age - Year Four rather than Year Five - without disadvantage to students currently on the programme.

Dyslexia day centre Guernsey

Pictured: The Dyslexia Day Centre.

It will also be used to purchase new phonics books for primary schools, with research into early reading highlighting the importance of systematic synthetic phonics. Each school will be given six copies of 100 different books per form of entry. This equates to about one book per week, per child in Reception, Year One and Year Two.

Meanwhile, secondary schools will be given several thousand pounds to provide additional interventions for children who need support to improve their reading. One literacy specialist will work between the current La Mare de Carteret High School and Les Beaucamps High School, while another will work at St Sampson's High and The Grammar School.

Further to this, additional funding has been allocated to buy books for secondary school students to encourage reading for pleasure. Staff have been given the opportunity to nominate texts and suggest how they might be used within schools.

Pictured top: File image. 

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