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Literacy

A number of strategies are in place at Culcheth High School to support improved levels of literacy and, as a result, improved grades and confidence for all students. These strategies fall into two main categories: the first, whole school literacy, promotes improved literacy across the whole curriculum; the second, literacy intervention, supports specific identified students to improve specific aspects of literacy.

To support literacy across the curriculum we have introduced standardised procedures for writing and reading texts, supported by learning materials in all classrooms. In 2021/22 a whole-school approach to oracy was launched and that will be developed further in future years.  Subjects also have their own literacy displays. All students have literacy targets which are displayed on all exercise books and are referred to in all subject areas as part of marking and feedback; and all teachers use literacy marking codes when assessing work and giving feedback. Student planners contain additional pages to help with specific areas of literacy that students most commonly struggle with.  A number of training sessions have been run for staff who wish to improve their literacy teaching even further and elements of literacy regularly feature as a significant proportion of staff CPD, coaching and training.  Every lesson has a minimum of two words for the lesson, one an important piece of subject jargon and the other taken from a list of academic words essential to student success during and after school, which are explicitly taught using a range of strategies.

To support students with additional literacy requirements, a range of strategies have also been put in place. These students are provided with two hours of additional literacy teaching every week, in small classes staffed by English teachers and specialist support staff. These classes, which have detailed, bespoke schemes of work, are supported by a range of specialist resources and the focus within them is on individualised support. This year, students will also have the opportunity to work to improve writing from other subjects. Depending on student requirements, the course contains phonics teaching, a texts-based curriculum, a range of diagnostic packages, and heavily personalised learning. In addition, our peer reading programme involves Year 10 students acting as reading mentors every week, helping those students in Year 7 and Year 8 who require additional support to improve their reading.  Each students on the literacy intervention programme has an Individual Literacy Plan, completely personal to them, that is shared with all of their teachers to support their learning right across the curriculum.

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