Saturday, July 20, 2013

Phonics screening check - results from three schools

Now the dust has begun to settle after the phonics screening check, three schools have sent me this year’s results.

First up is Pinchmill Lower, where, like last year, 100% of the children got between 32 and 40. Well done to head teacher Vanessa Coleman and to her staff.
Next is Fishburn Primary School in Durham and situated in a very challenging catchment area, which has also reported their results for the screening check. In the interests of being absolutely transparent, I will give their exact findings, which as schools will know are more complex than simple figures often show. The school reports an 80% success rate overall. However, two children, neither of whom scored at or above the 32 mark, arrived in the school for the first time on the day of the check! Another child had attended the school for ten days only and one child was ‘non-verbal’ and couldn’t participate in the check at all. Taking these children into consideration, the percentage of children scoring at or above 32/40 reaches 92%.This left two children, both of whom scored 23/40, not reaching the expected level, and both are in the process of statutory assessment for speech and language disorders.

The school have also sent me some hugely impressive data on the progress children in Y1 and Y2 have made in their decoding ability and reading comprehension, which I will be posting on the Sounds-Write website in due course.

Finally, I’ve just received the following from Theresa Plummer, the learning support manager at St George’s CEPS in Wandsworth:

"Jan (the head teacher at Ste George’s) has asked me to share the fantastic news with you that St George's achieved 100% in the Phonics check this year, including the children who either missed the check due to absence or did not achieve it last year! It really is great news to be moving the children up to Year 2 with such solid basic skills.  Also in Year 1 all the children are reading at least at NC Level 1A, with most of the class at 2C or 2B."

St George's is real proof that Sounds-Write works!  We are finding it very beneficial further up the school also.

Congratulations to all three schools!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sounds-Write in Western Australia

I’m just back from Perth in Australia, where I’ve been running two back-to-back courses with Mary Gladstone, our resident Sounds-Write trainer based in Lismore, near Brisbane.

We had a terrific time with our animated trainees. It must be the weather! Their winter, when I arrived, was warmer than our ‘summer’, even if the sun does go down at ten minutes to six on the dot.
Over the two weeks we spent in Western Australia, we trained forty-two trainees and the feedback has been absolutely fantastic. One head teacher told me as she was leaving at the end of the course that it had been the best professional development course she’d ever attended. And that was pretty much what the others felt too.
Not only did Mary and I as trainers do a lot of teaching, we learnt an awful lot from our lively discussions with the trainees.
We are also very excited to tell you that Mandy Nayton and her two colleagues Margie Backhouse and Gemma Boyle from DFS, where the training was held, have all embarked upon the Sounds-Write trainer’s programme.
Watch this space for the next training.