SSIF - Improving Writing Attainment for Disadvantaged Boys

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About this project

This collaborative project funded by the Strategic School Improvement fund has seen 7 Teaching School Alliances from across Leicestershire and Rutland and Local Authorities working together to implement evidence informed practice to support a group of 28 schools. The data shows that Leicestershire schools are behind the national figures for writing. There is also a significant gap between boys receiving pupil premium and their peers. This is shown by the LA wide data below:

  • EYFS % disadvantaged reaching a good level of development (2016: 44.6% gap to Leics cohort: 23)
  • KS1 %ARE in writing for disadvantaged (2016: 41.4% gap to Leics cohort: 22.5)
  • KS2 %ARE in reading, writing, maths for disadvantaged (2016: 35.3% gap to Leics cohort: 17.5)
  • KS2 Scaled score average progress in writing for disadvantaged (2016: -1.5 gap to Leics cohort: 0.8)
  • KS4 5 A*-C including English and maths for disadvantaged (2016: 40.4% gap to Leics cohort: 24.7)
  • KS4 Attainment 8 for disadvantaged (2016: 38.07% gap to Leics cohort: 11.47)
  • The project focuses on using visual literacy and experiential learning to increase confidence, enthusiasm and engagement in writing activities in line with the EEF guidance for improving literacy. Short Term

  • Clusters work collaboratively to deliver evidence based practice in schools and develop approaches to improve boys writing.
  • School staff engage in the activity and practice in the school starts to change.
  • Teachers are better skilled and more knowledgeable of how to improve writing through visual literacy and experiential learning.
  • Boys’ confidence and motivation to write shows improvement.
  • Teachers become more reflective practitioners, reviewing their practice and making improvements.
  • Long term The aim is to see an improvement in outcomes for white disadvantaged boys as a result of the activity and a narrowing of the gap between LA wide and national figures.

    The county wide KS2 reading progress figure in 2017 was 0.5 (compared to a nation figure of 0) and the LA wide figure for KS1 reading is 75% ARE, compared to 75.8% ARE nationally and compares poorly for an authority with relatively low levels of pupil premium.

    The project focuses on the teaching of synthetic phonics, comprehension skills, and oral language skills at KS1 in line with recommendation 14 of the EEF guidance for improving literacy in KS1. At KS2 the focus is on developing language capability to support reading, teaching reading comprehension including reciprocal reading, and supporting pupils to develop fluent reading capabilities. The KS2 activity directly followed the EEF recommendations for KS2 literacy 13 with an additional focus on volume of reading.

    Planned outcomes

    The project has both short- and long-term outcomes. In the short-term schools will be engaged across their entire teaching staff, implementing evidence-based practice and approaches. Pupils’ confidence and ability in reading will improve, encouraging them to read more and start a virtuous circle of improvement. Teachers will become reflective practitioners by engaging with other schools in their cluster.

    In the longer term an improvement in pupil outcomes is an expected result of the activity. Although an LA wide impact may not be apparent, from focused work with the target schools, a significant impact is expected on the reading outcomes i with a narrowing of the gap between LA wide and national figures.

    Project Resources

    Resources The resources have been kindly contributed by project leads and CPD facilitators, to ensure that the impact of the project, could be spread across the region and beyond.

  • James Clements Resources
  • Matt Dickinson Resources
  • Michael Markham Resources
  • Useful Links

  • Talk for writing
  • Polar explorer
  • Darwin workshop
  • Literacy Shed
  • Outdoor Pursuit
  • Talk for writing
  • Nottingham Library learning partnership
  • Touring theatre company KS1
  • Touring theatre company KS2
  • Partner Teaching Schools

  • Affinity TSA
  • Forest Way TSA
  • Thomas Estley Learning Alliance (TELA)
  • Loughborough Learning Alliance (LLA)
  • Learn AT TSA
  • Leicestershire County Council
  • CPD Leaders

  • James Clements
  • Michael Markham
  • Jane Creasy
  • Kirstie Randle - STEP TSA
  • Acknowledgements

    Lead Teaching School - Oadby Learning Partnership Project Managers - Sam Maher CPD Facilitators
  • Dr Chris Whitney
  • James Clements
  • Michael Markham
  • Jane Creasy
  • Kirstie Randle - STEP TSA
  • SLE’s leading clusters

  • Tom Carte – Ibstock Junior School
  • Sarah Walker - Church Langton CE Primary School
  • Natalie Teece - John Ferneley College
  • Vicky Newman - Barwell Junior School
  • Kirstie Randle - STEP TSA
  • Copyright © 2017 Leicestershire TSA