Malta schools examine how IOE-led Reading Recovery programme is implemented in Bristol

Malta’s National Literacy Agency is visiting Bristol schools  (9-10 July) to see how Reading Recovery can reduce the number of children struggling to learn literacy and have wider benefits across the school.

The Reading Recovery programme is implemented across the world and University College London (UCL) Institute of Education (IOE) leads the intervention across Europe. It helps thousands of pupils every year to improve their reading and writing by providing literacy support for the lowest attaining five and six year olds through daily one-to-one reading sessions with trained specialist teachers.

Marika Farrugia (Malta National Literacy Agency) visited three schools, St Teresa Catholic Primary School, Hannah More Primary School and Glenfrome Primary School as part of her trip. She met teachers to discuss how they integrate the Reading Recovery teachers’ expertise across the whole school. She also had an opportunity to discuss other reading projects across the city, including the city’s involvement in the international project, Bristol Reading City.

Bristol, one of the 25 Reading Recovery Centres across England that offer accredited training and professional development for teachers, has implemented Reading Recovery since 1999. The city has developed a strategy for schools to benefit from Reading Recovery across the Primary age range called the Bristol Every Child a Reader (ECaR) Standard.

The Bristol ECaR Standard is a school improvement tool intended to raise standards in reading across the whole school. It empowers the Reading Recovery teacher to work with senior leaders and whole staff in improving the teaching of reading. They take on the role of a reading specialist that is valued and respected by the school community.

Debbie Miles, one of two teacher leaders working across Bristol, said:

“We are very proud of what teachers and schools have achieved. They demonstrate how schools can provide a supportive network for every child finding literacy learning challenging by drawing on the expertise of their Reading Recovery teacher.”

IOE academic and National Lead for Reading Recovery Europe, Dr Sue Bodman, said:

“Reading Recovery has made a positive contribution to the life chances of so many children. Bristol have added further value by creating the Bristol ECaR Standard. Innovation of this kind deserves to be celebrated and I am delighted that Malta, so early in their Reading Recovery implementation can benefit from Bristol’s endeavours.”

Image: US Department of Education via Flickr