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Primary school reading scheme expands

07 March 2017

Every Child Our Future (ECOF), an education charity that runs an innovative public-private-community scheme to help primary age children improve their literacy skills, is expanding to four more schools after only one term in operation.

ECOF has worked closely with the Education Department to train community volunteers who read with five to seven year olds in school. The charity is also funding specialist teachers and teaching assistants to work with children individually. 

In September 2016 ECOF was launched in the following schools:

  • Janvrin 
  • Samares 
  • Springfield 
  • Grands Vaux 
It has already been extended and is now also operating at: 
  • d’Auvergne
  • Plat Douet
  • St Luke’s
  • St Saviour’s

Nick Kershaw, co-founder of ECOF in Jersey, said, “Our analysis of the first term shows a significant positive impact on the 380 children we have been working with. In reading and writing they are catching up and moving ahead. The vast majority have exceeded the average rate of progress and some have surpassed it by four or five times, enhancing their chances of success in education and in their lives ahead.”

ECOF in figures:

  • 270 reading volunteers: including 190 from the corporate sector
  • 380 children being supported by reading volunteers, ECOF funded teaching assistants and ECOF specialist reading recovery teachers
  • 90 teaching assistants trained in the Boosting Reading at Primary programme
  • the vast majority of ECOF supported children exceed national progress targets

Education Minister Deputy Rod Bryans said, “Feedback from schools, parents and volunteers has left us in no doubt how effective this has been in just a short time. ECOF sits perfectly with our strategy to improve standards by giving our youngest children the confidence to read and write better and, most importantly, to see books as something they can really enjoy, embrace and explore.”

Iain George, Head Teacher of Janvrin School said, “Volunteers can see children improving and that gives them a sense of pride. Parents are seeing their children engage with books and feeling good about literacy where they might not have before. Best of all, our students are excited about taking part. They know they are making progress and want to keep going. That is invaluable.”

Nick Kershaw added, “We have made an excellent start and I would like to thank our generous corporate sponsors, all the volunteers and school staff involved. The first term of ECOF has been a great success and we are now poised to help even more Jersey children.”

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