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Friday, 10th May 2013

UK: Improving literacy in secondary schools: a shared responsibility

Source: Ofsted

From the Introduction:

‘Literacy’....is more than the mechanics of reading, writing, speaking and listening. The National Curriculum demands that connections be made between each strand and across subjects, which calls for thought and understanding, for recall, selection and analysis of ideas and information, and for coherent, considered and convincing communication in speech and in writing. All pupils should be encouraged to:

 ‘make extended, independent contributions that develop ideas in depth’

 ‘make purposeful presentations that allow them to speak with authority on significant subjects’

 ‘engage with texts that challenge preconceptions and develop understanding beyond the personal and immediate’

 ‘experiment with language and explore different ways of discovering and shaping their own meanings’

 ‘use writing as a means of reflecting on and exploring a range of views and perspectives on the world.’

This survey looks at how some secondary schools have identified and are successfully tackling weaknesses in pupils’ literacy – not only in their speaking and listening, reading and writing, but in their readiness to engage with challenging concepts, to make constructive connections between subjects and to learn from the thinking and experience of others.

+ Direct links to Report and Summary from this page (PDF; 952 and 342 KB)


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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

Adrian can be reached at adrian.janes@freepint.com

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