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Picking up the Pace

22 July 2002

Picking up the Pace

Education Minister Trevor Mallard is urging schools to read the results of a research project that significantly lifted reading and writing achievement for new entrant children in Mangere and Otara.

The Minister said he regarded the research as internationally significant and was keen for it to be extended to other parts of the country.

Trevor Mallard launched Picking up the Pace: A Summary today. The summary highlights the key findings of the full research report, released for the first time late last year.

“The research was a great success. By the time they were six, the new entrants in the study were reading and writing close to the levels achieved by six-year-olds across the country,” Trevor Mallard said.

“It shows that with the right support, children from disadvantaged backgrounds can still achieve academically. That is what the government is aiming for with our reducing disparity policies

Picking up the Pace delivered concentrated professional development to teachers at 15 schools and a range of early childhood centres in Mangere and Otara. More than 400 children were involved in the research.

It was delivered in a programme run in schools by Dr Gwenneth Phillips and Professor Stuart McNaughton.

“”The research project was a combined effort involving communities, teachers, academics and the Ministry of Education.”

“The new summary means the findings will be more easily shared by other schools and teachers. It will be a key resource for a professional development section in workshops being run by the Ministry of Education as part of the Literacy Leadership Programme. Principals and literacy leaders will be able to attend workshops during terms three and four this year.

The summary and full report are available at:

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