New Fundings to Boost Literacy

More primary school pupils will benefit from high-quality phonics and expert literacy teaching as part of new funding announced today (Sunday, 9 October).

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Over £24 million is set to be invested in building children’s literacy skills as the government continues to support pupils’ recovery from the pandemic and work towards the target of 90% of primary children reaching the expected standard in literacy and numeracy.

The announcement marks the conclusion of Dyslexia Awareness Week, with targeted literacy support playing a pivotal role in helping pupils with dyslexia develop all-important reading skills.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

“Their background should limit no child’s education, so I am committed to levelling up opportunity and ensuring every pupil has the chance to fulfil their potential.

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“That is why I am delighted to announce this bumper investment in our phonics and literacy programmes, which will help thousands of pupils across the country catch up and close the gap following months out of the classroom due to coronavirus.

“I want to thank all those teachers and school staff who have worked so hard over recent months to support pupils’ learning and wellbeing, as well as parents who have gone above and beyond to home-school their children. We are giving every child the best possible start in life.”

The funding will be used to:

– Double the number of primary schools benefitting from high-quality phonics teaching, with £10 million being made available to expand the successful Early Years Phonics Programme.

– Provide over 1,000 primary schools with expert literacy support through a new Literacy Fund worth £14 million. This will include funding for specialist teachers to deliver targeted interventions for small groups of pupils and resources and training for school staff.

The expansion of the Early Years Phonics Programme and the new Literacy Fund are in addition to the government’s ongoing commitment to invest over £1 billion in catching up on lost learning for all pupils, including an additional £650 million this academic year specifically for primary school pupils.

This is on top of a further £700 million already announced for catch-up support for secondary school pupils, as well as a new one-to-one tuition programme available to every Year 7 pupil who needs it.

The government also supports parents and carers in helping their children learn at home, with a wide range of online resources and activities available through the BBC’s Bitesize platform and Oak National Academy.

What do you think of the government’s new investment in children’s literacy? Let us know in the comments below.

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