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Reading at Royds Hall

Our Reading and Literacy vision within the context of Royds Hall

‘Literacy is the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realise his or her full potential.’ – Kofi Amman

Reading and literacy has a hugely significant impact on the progress and outcomes of students. At Royds Hall we have invested a lot of time into researching and investigating the importance of reading and how this impacts on students both in school, but also in their wider lives outside of school. Our reading and literacy policy has been most heavily influenced by the following bodies of research:

  • Geoff Barton, Don’t Call It Literacy,
  • Education Endowment Foundation, Improving Literacy in Secondary Schools Guidance Report, 2019.
  • Oxford School Improvement, Building an Outstanding Reading School, 2017.

These bodies of research are used by school leaders to design and implement approaches to reading that transcend and permeate the curriculum, enabling students to develop confidence and fluency in reading. We believe that reading is not only to be embedded within the English department, but in all subjects across school and that by supporting students with their reading at every available opportunity we will help them to achieve highly.

We believe that literacy and communication are essential life skills. To support this, we believe students should have the opportunities to be able to read fluently, speak confidently and write articulately. These have been core, underpinning values when considering how to support our students with developing their communication skills. Furthermore, because literacy is central to children’s academic, emotional and social development, we firmly believe it should be at the heart of any curriculum. We want our students to develop the skills and knowledge that will enable them to communicate fluently, effectively and creatively through both the spoken and written language. Finally, we want to equip students with the necessary skills to become engaged global citizens and lifelong learners, and help them to succeed in their chosen destinations.

We work hard to instil a love of reading in our students which is supported by a range of strategies. At Royds Hall we encourage our students to read challenging and ambitious texts to develop their skills to achieve highly.  Staff promote a love of reading and this is improving the rhetoric around reading among our students. Our expectations around engagement with reading and literacy are clearly displayed around school which allows us to make small but effective changes to further secure and embed students’ reading, writing and spoken skills.

We expect our students to meet three key expectations:

  • Students must engage with the Big Debate and Form Time Reciprocal Reading
  • Students must try their best when asked to read aloud in class and respect others when they are speaking
  • Students must engage fully in opportunities to read whenever they are presented to them

We have six key principles that underpin our approach to reading

  • We ensure that reading runs through our curriculum
  • We use research to select the best approaches
  • We encourage all students to read challenging texts
  • We promote the enjoyment of reading for all
  • We monitor students' reading abilities regularly
  • We have targeted reading catch-up programs


The Royds Hall Approach

At Royds Hall Academy we aim to support the bespoke needs of our students and have the following strategies in place to help students develop confidence and fluency in reading:

  • Accelerated Reader Program for Key Stage 3 to support students in selecting and understanding appropriate texts
  • Reading Friends which enables older students to support younger students in their reading
  • Fresh Start Phonics to support students in the early phases of reading
  • IDL software to support reading and spelling
  • Reciprocal Reading which is a structured approach to teaching strategies (questioning, clarifying, summarising and predicting) that students can use to improve their reading comprehension.

Key Stage 3Supporting students and helping them to develop a love of reading

In Key Stage 3 we aim to identify students’ reading ability and develop a love of reading. Our strategies include:

  • Testing students on entry through the NGRT testing program to evaluate reading abilities
  • Year 7 and 8 students engaging with the Accelerated Reader Program in English lessons and the undertaking of STAR assessments termly
  • Introducing students to the school library and teaching them how to select appropriate books.
  • Reciprocal Reading takes place in a structured weekly form time session and during subject lessons.

Key Stage 4Developing students into confident, independent readers

In Key Stage 4 we aim to support students in reading confidently

  • Developing reading fluency through the use of reciprocal reading in all lessons
  • Encouraging students to read challenging and ambitious texts
  • Providing opportunities for paired reading between Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 3 students through the Reading Friends program