The first, from Pinchmill Lower School in Felmersham, Bedfordford, comes from the head teacher, Vanessa Coleman.
I thought I would write to you to share our news and success with you. We, at Pinchmill, have been using the Sounds-Write phonics programme consistently throughout the whole school over the last year. We have now trained all of our teaching staff, with our new teacher last September attending training in October of 2011. From this point on each class in the school has been taught Sounds-Write.
All of the teaching staff and some of our teaching assistants are involved in the delivery of sessions, and have seen the development in the children over the year. They are all delighted with how it is working with the children and have seen good development in reading and writing during this time.
We recently were visited by one of the Sounds-Write trainers, Jane Bent, who was very pleased with what she saw and has asked for some of my teaching staff to work with other schools through the ‘Leading Teacher Programme’, to support them with delivering the Sounds-Write.
We were also highly delighted with the outcome of the newly introduced ‘Year 1 Phonic Screening Check’ where 100% of the children were successful in passing the test, a great achievement for the children and our Year 1 teacher, Victoria Bailey.
We are very proud of our success, and I am sure that you will also be proud of developing a programme that has proven to be effective. I am sure that with growing experience and expertise our children will continue to make good progress with their reading, writing and spelling.
The other testimonial came in the form of an email from Theresa Plummer, who is the learning support manager at St George’s CE primary School in Wandsworth.
She writes, ‘I thought you would be delighted to know that St George's achieved the highest pass rate in Wandsworth in the recent National Y1 Phonics Assessment!
28/29 children reached the required standard (31+/40 correct). Our thirtieth child was absent during the assessment period, so is not counted in the figures, but she passed when assessed on her return. 93% officially, but 96.5% including our absentee!
The average pass rate for the Borough was 66%, with a range from 42% to 93%. The National pass rate is not yet public knowledge!
Sounds-write has been successfully implemented across the school. KS2 have seen a marked improvement in spelling in particular. Teachers and teaching assistants feel so much more confident in what they are teaching and how. We have achieved our highest ever SATs results at KS2 this year.
Congratulations ought also to go to Sarah Horner, the Sounds-Write trainer who trained the St George’s team, and to Jane Bent and Pamela Gross, who were trainers of the Pinchmill staff.