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Get Oxfordshire Reading: Headteachers backing campaign methods
PRIMARY school leaders across Oxfordshire have welcomed the major campaign to improve literacy skills.
Yesterday, headteachers and representatives from 56 primary schools attended a conference at the King’s Centre, Osney Mead, Oxford, to find out more about the Oxfordshire Reading Campaign.
It was the first chance for the National Literacy Trust, which is running the campaign on behalf of Oxfordshire County Council , to give detailed information to schools about the scheme.
And the reaction was overwhelmingly positive.
Hilary Webb, headteacher at Our Lady’s Primary School, Cowley, described the campaign as “very promising” and said she was keen to ensure it ran well alongside the Reading Quest volunteer scheme which operated at Our Lady’s.
She added: “The community aspects are great.”
Karen Harrington, headteacher at Dry Sandford Primary School, said she believed the campaign was well researched and well thought-out. She added the school would definitely want to be part of the project.
And Cathryn Wilkes, headteacher at Edward Feild Primary in Kidlington, said her school had been using a similar group of books for nine months.
She said: “We purchased them originally because we wanted to engage boys in particular, but we have found that boys and girls are equally interested and we have seen better reading results.
“For the children who are struggling I am really interested.”
Some of the Oxford schools which have been invited to take part are also being offered an alternate school improvement scheme run by Oxford City Council , which will focus on both literacy and numeracy.
Church Cowley St James Primary School and Cutteslowe Primary School are weighing up the advantages of the two schemes.
Church Cowley headteacher Jonathan Walker said: “I’m very positive that it will fit in with our current priorities which are very much about raising standards in reading in order to impact the writing and the rest of their learning.”
Jon Gray, headteacher at Cutteslowe, said: “I liked the idea of the campaign.”
Jill Dovey-Bridgeman, headteacher at Stockham Primary School, was keen to be involved.
Eighty-one schools have been invited to join the scheme, which includes training on reading intervention and core literacy teaching skills, a volunteer programme and a public campaign.
Participants will get free training and support but will need to buy the books from Oxford University Press, with a 20 per cent discount.
Other schools will also be entitled to the discount and can buy into the training if they want to.
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