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OFSTED criticise reading instruction ...

(88 Posts)
mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 07:09:19

I wonder how many more schools around the country would "fail" to meet expectations

"Not all the schools taught early reading using phonic decoding as ‘the route to decode words’, as required by the national curriculum
2014. Three headteachers were unaware of this requirement in the new programme of study.

Almost all of the schools visited used a range of early reading books to teach young children to read. Many of these books, however, were not ‘closely matched to pupils’ developing phonics knowledge and knowledge of common exception words’. In other words, the books used did not support young children to practise and apply the phonics they were learning.

Four of the schools did not send home phonically decodable books so that
children could practise their new knowledge and skills at home."

Frusso Sat 28-Jun-14 07:32:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 07:35:37

It doesn't bode well for September if they aren't prepared now.

"Three headteachers were unaware of this requirement in the new programme of study." ... isolated cases?

KittyandTeal Sat 28-Jun-14 07:42:00

Jeeze. Where is the money coming from to replace all the current reading schemes with ones that match the national curriculum phonics from sept.

We're still using old old reading books. We re-band them every few years and have to work on a best fit system! Would cost a bloody fortune to buy a reading scheme that specifically fits phonic schemes!

MrsKCastle Sat 28-Jun-14 07:45:05

Doesn't surprise me. DD1's school introduced Letters and Sounds this year, presenting it to the kids as an exciting new initiative. hmm

I am extremely glad that they're teaching phonics ' 'properly' now, but they're still talking about tricky words 'which can't be sounded out'. hmm hmm

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 07:45:56

The government provided thousands of pounds over the last 2 years for schools to purchase training and books ... some schools chose not to kittyandteal

MrsKCastle Sat 28-Jun-14 07:47:13

KittyandTeal How about the match funding that was available until quite recently? Did your school not take the opportunity to stock up on phonics readers at that point?

Bonsoir Sat 28-Jun-14 07:48:38

The awareness raising campaign and preparation for an all phonics approach to reading in UK schools has been long and all schools ought to be aware by now!

bronya Sat 28-Jun-14 07:50:57

Most schools still use the Oxford Reading Tree. That initially supports look and say, then later on supports mixed methods, never phonics as a primary method of reading. So most schools would probably get told off about that!!

Soveryupset Sat 28-Jun-14 08:05:44

Our school still using old look and see biff and chip books. Dd1 starting in september so curious to see if they have woken up or hope never to see ofsted again ( not been since 2007 )

lunar1 Sat 28-Jun-14 08:10:50

I think investing in phonics books would work out far cheaper than re teaching all the children the look say method fails in a few years time.

It's hard to believe that children are still coming home with books that are not decodable, maybe there should be an amnesty, one phonics book given out to a school for every ort book surrendered!

I was one of the children failed by the old system, it did not make school fun and really held me back.

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 08:11:07

In over 20 years I've never taught in a school that uses ORT ...guess I've been lucky

micah Sat 28-Jun-14 08:14:12

I flipping hate biff chip and kipper. Never seemed to help dd learn to read either. She struggle with ORT right until year 3, when she discovered David Walliams and has rocketed since.

KittyandTeal Sat 28-Jun-14 08:18:26

No, I think we used it to replace/buy decent guided reading sets for ks2 as that's where our reading progression is slowing compared to ks1.

The state of reading books in my current school is dire. We need much more than a couple of thousand to bring it up to scratch, it's not been added too for years. God only knows where our money goes but it's definitely not on books sadly.

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 08:23:07

The matched funding couldn't be used to buy guided reading sets for KS2 KittyandTeal it was ear marked for KS1 and for phonics books. (£6000 per school buys a lot of books) wink

kesstrel Sat 28-Jun-14 08:55:29

Just a couple days ago I had an on-line exchange with a primary teacher who concluded "Children still need to learn how to sight read key words...and I'll keep rote learning them that way." I wonder if she or her SLT are is aware of the September requirements. (She also produced the usual excuses for why "good readers" don't pass the phonics check...).

NotCitrus Sat 28-Jun-14 08:58:19

My ds's school have done a fantastic job with getting new books (do schools that expand get a wad of cash for 50% more books? Might explain it) and slotting in older less-phonics-based books with explanation s about words with tricky bits and ususual ways of making certain sounds and 'naughty' words with silent letters.

Seems to be working for all the kids I know well enough to know about their reading - going from knowing letter sounds and the odd combo, to reading pretty much anything presented in a non-intimidating way, less than a year later.

toomuchicecream Sat 28-Jun-14 09:01:55

Match funding requires the school to provide 50% of the money. At the time my school was working very hard to eliminate a huge budget deficit so NO money was available for anything other than absolute essentials. So my school was unable to benefit from the match funding.

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 09:11:44

NotCitrus ALL state schools had access to the "wad of cash" for 50% more books not all chose to access it.

PastSellByDate Sat 28-Jun-14 09:11:57

mrz examples of poor practice in KS1 including groups with adults reading to children right next to each other - so noisy environment where it's difficult to concentrate - is exactly the environment DD1 was failing to learn to read in between YR - Y2. Our reading mornings when parents came in were much the same - I literally couldn't hear what my daughter was saying, let alone myself.

I think the chaotic/ busy environment of a class can be offputting to children who are easily distracted/ overloaded.

personally I suspect this is why DD1 made a slow start with reading/ maths and suddenly improved beyond recognition Y3/ Y4 - because we turned to working quietly at home with few distractions. We just put in 30 minutes/ 1 hour a day on reading and maths day after day after day - until finally it all seemed to click.

The HT buries her head in the sand (frequently her office door is closed) but the noise volumes in the school on a typical day are phenomenol - this isn't a happy busy sound of children learning/ answering questions - this is voluble hubub of children milling about/ gossipping/ fighting.

My understanding is that this not paying attention/ talking over the teacher pattern carries on in local Senior schools.

Not at all surprised about teachers/ HT not understanding new curriculum/ new initiatives - I had to tell Head of English about SPAG coming and ask if she was prepared - she had no idea - I sent her the link to the OFSTED newsletter and suggested she register. St. Mediocre certainly obstantly refuse to observe/ sample/ research best practice at other high achieving local schools <0.4 miles away and effectively teaching very similar mix of children. I was actually told by HT it wasn't best practice to ask other schools about their policies. I was also told by a teacher who just been trained in maths at KS2 that vertical methods of addition/ subtraction/ multiplication/ division were senior school ability level - shouldn't tax payers money for training days go to someone who actually is working to best practice?

OFSTED were very impressed by 'quiet, well-behaved children' but probably were blithely unaware that the children had been told if they act up or don't mind they will have homework every night and daily tests for the rest of the school year by pretty well all the teachers. (I wonder do teachers put I regularly threaten children down on their CV? Do teachers see the message they're sending about homework - homework = punishment?)

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 09:12:43

For over 2 years toomuchicecream?

toomuchicecream Sat 28-Jun-14 15:15:46

Yup - it took 3 1/2 years to clear the substantial budget deficit created by the previous head. And everything was bared to the absolute bone to clear it so quickly. I'm lucky - I started in the term before the deficit was cleared, so I didn't experience the worst of it, but I still had to spend substantial amounts of my own money on what I consider to be classroom essentials.

Mitzi50 Sat 28-Jun-14 15:31:04

mrz - the problem is that there are still HTs who do not like phonics - possibly because they do not understand it. I am leaving a school where the head seems to regard "phonics" as a stand alone activity not related to actual reading and writing. Fortunately the previous head had taken advantage of the match funding.

mrz Sat 28-Jun-14 15:53:09

Those heads may have a problem when Ofsted comes calling.

BucksKid Sat 28-Jun-14 19:47:17

I think things won't really change till this generation of HTs retire.

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