Priority 3: Literacy

Our aim

Our aim is to create a generation of readers who use the power of literacy and a love of reading to unlock opportunities.

Why this is an area of focus?

  • At the end of the early years, and each key stage, children and young people on the North Yorkshire Coast have less developed literacy skills than the national average.
    At the end of year one, just over a quarter of children do not reach the expected standard in phonics, with almost 40% of disadvantaged children not doing so.
  • Good phonics teaching can help children secure up to four months of additional progress in reading. Children not securing sound phonetic knowledge fall behind their peers from the start of their schooling.
  • Key stage 2 attainment and progress in reading is below national average for all children and disadvantaged children.
  • Too few young people complete secondary school with good marks in English and have to continue to secure a pass into their post-16 learning.
  • Professionals report significant concerns amongst children on the North Yorkshire Coast in their communication skills more generally. These can give rise to weaker social skills, which are essential ultimately to success in the world of work.
  • Developing literacy skills has already been a focus of the Scarborough Pledge. A ‘lead practitioner’ for literacy has been working across Scarborough and Filey secondary schools, and some primary schools on transition between key stage 2 and key stage 3. There is significant ambition and commitment across the North Yorkshire Coast to improving literacy.

What will we do?

  • Phonics roadshow: In July 2017 25 teachers came together to develop practice in the use of a systematic approach to phonics teaching. They agreed they wanted more of this type of support and training, including observing teaching in other schools.
  • Literacy Hub: We have commissioned the National Literacy Trust Hub to work with the community to nurture a love of reading across the area.
  • Phonics training: 5 schools are undergoing intensive phonics training on the Ruth Miskin Read Write Inc. training programme.
  • Thinking Reading: All secondary schools can opt into a programme to receive a reading catch up intervention at KS3. This builds on successful approach carried out at Scalby School.

Our targets

  • All children on the North Yorkshire Coast (on average) make expected progress in reading at end of key stage 2.
  • Disadvantaged children on the coast (on average) make equal or better progress than disadvantaged children nationally.
  • Year one phonics outcomes rise to over 80% for all children.
  • Year one phonics outcome rise to over 70% for disadvantaged children.
  • Over 200 more children in primary schools reach the expected standard in phonics.