Report On Improving Literacy And Numeracy Achievement In Schools
NIA 116/11-15, Fifteenth Report of Session 2011-15 - Report, Together with the Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee Relating to the Report and the Minutes of Evidence
- Northern Ireland Assembly - Public Accounts Committee
- TSO (The Stationery Office)
'Report On Improving Literacy And Numeracy Achievement In Schools (NIA 116/11-15)' examines the Department of Education's progress in improving levels of literacy and numeracy in Northern Ireland.
While there has been improvement in literacy and numeracy in recent years, the pace of progress has been slow and there is a high concentration of poor outcomes in some schools, including a big gap in performance linked partly to social deprivation.
There can also be a wide variation in the results achieved by schools with apparently similar intakes. Girls generally achieve higher standards than boys across the school sector, and maintained schools generally outperform schools in the controlled sector among disadvantaged communities.
The Committee identified several key elements linked to performance in schools achieving high standards of literacy and numeracy:
a belief that each child can learn and build on basic literacy and numeracy skills regardless of background;
convincing evidence indicating that the greatest improvements come from systematic and sustained intervention in children's early years;
the engagement of parents to provide educational development in the home and in local communities;
strong leadership and management practices, involving whole-school approaches to the teaching of literacy and numeracy;
the provision of quality teaching and learning by teachers who have acquired evidence-based teaching practices that are effective in meeting the developmental needs of each child; and
effective school governance based on a balance between supporting and challenging the school leadership team.
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