As part of the Emerging Literacy development across the Northern Alliance this year, we published an interim report on the progress made in December 2016.

As part of our continued collaborative enquiry in raising attainment in literacy, language and communication, we have undertaken midyear data analysis of Phonological Awareness and Pre-Handwriting as of January 2017 to compare with the baseline data which we gathered in September 2016 within these two domains.


This, along with information on the progress made between June 2016 and March 2017, can be found in the report which can be accessed by clicking the image above or the link below:

The Key Summary Points and Recommendations on pages 2 and 3 highlight:

From feedback at networks within local authorities it would be reasonable to summarise:

  • Practitioners have been addressing the gaps in foundational skills for reading and writing through direct instruction, planning for learners based on their identified gaps in learning and tracking their mastery across foundational skills for reading and writing.
  • Ongoing support through networks within local authorities has allowed for education practitioners, educational psychologists and Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) to work collaboratively to develop teacher subject knowledge to support learners through creating a practitioner learning environment in which strategies can be reflected upon, successes can be celebrated and problems can be shared and solved across classrooms and schools.

From the data collection of a sample of Primary 1 pupils across the Northern Alliance, (665 entries in Phonological Awareness and 513 entries in Pre Handwriting) it would be reasonable to summarise:

  • By the end of January 2017, the particular pattern of gaps remains different for each child, regardless of their local authority or background factors external to school; however, there are some aspects of foundational skills for reading and writing in which gaps remain more and less prominent.
  • By the end of January 2017 more than half (51.18%) of Primary 1 children had fully secure phoneme discrimination, phoneme segmentation and phoneme blending which are crucial foundational skills for reading and writing which support automaticity of reading and spelling words using phonics. This is an increase of 36.4% from September 2016 (15.4%).
  • By January 2017 almost all of the Primary 1 children assessed (93.18%) had a secure tripod grasp which is required to manipulate writing implements with sufficient precision and ease to allow for effective learning of handwriting. There has been an increase of 9.62% since September 2016 (83.56%).

CLICK HERE – Northern Alliance: LLC Interim Report – March 2017

A final report will be published in July to detail the progress made over the academic year.

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