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Mr English needs to do some further reading

Mr English needs to do some further reading

Associate Education Minister David Benson-Pope says "Mr English has demonstrated he is completely out of touch with how schools are currently teaching literacy".

Mr Benson-Pope was responding to bizarre claims made by Mr English that children in need were not getting help with literacy.

"He clearly needs to do some more reading on the matter", says Mr Benson-Pope.

Merely reading the Annual Monitoring of Reading Recovery Report will confirm what every teacher knows - not all schools use that programme. There is now an increasing emphasis on improving the teaching of literacy in the classroom without necessarily removing students from the classroom. There is a range of literacy interventions available.

If he has read Effective Literacy Practice in Years 1-4 (Ministry of Education 2003) he will understand the focus on improving literacy teaching in the classroom.

By going to the Ministry of Education's Online Learning Centre at http://www.tki.org.nz/r/literacy_numeracy/lit_advice_e.php he can read all about the latest professional advice and support for teachers and the wider school community on literacy. He will also note the range of literacy interventions being used by schools.

Here he will also find a link to the Ministry's Curriculum Update (Issue 55 October 2004) on Literacy and Numeracy: Towards More Effective Teaching Practice at: http://www.tki.org.nz/r/governance/curric_updates/curr_update55_e.php including a case study on how a decile 3 school provided in-school professional development in literacy for their staff to raise their students' achievement levels in reading and writing.

"Schools are clearly making good decisions on what is best for their students in terms of the teaching of literacy and numeracy - and they are succeeding. At the core is ensuring that the quality of teaching is high, and that teachers have the resources to do the job", says Mr Benson-Pope.

"New Zealand students and their teachers should be proud that we rank 6th in the world in terms of reading literacy. It is unfortunate that Mr English continues to denigrate our education system and our students and teachers for his own political ends."

ENDS


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