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Copleston High School

Why Literacy Matters

“Literacy is not a luxury, it is a right and a responsibility. If our world is to meet the challenges of the twenty-first century we must harness the energy and creativity of all our citizens”

President Clinton, International Literacy day, September 8th 1994

At Copleston High School we are working hard to promote our students’ literacy and ensure they all achieve to the very best of their ability. Literacy matters in every subject in which your child reads, writes and expresses ideas verbally.

Did you know?

  • More than a quarter of 8 to 16 year olds have read more than 1 book in the last month.
  • Nearly 1 in 7 students aged 8 to 16 rarely or never read outside of class.
  • Only 1 in 4 say that their parents care if they spend time reading.
  • Less than half of children and young people enjoy writing.
  • The average reading age of 14-16 year olds is 10 years 7 months, but the average reading age of a GCSE exam paper is 15 years 7 months.

We all owe it to our children to give them the very best literacy skills, in order to improve their chances in life and to enable them to succeed in whatever path they choose. We will all be working hard to support your child’s literacy development in all subjects and we would welcome any time that you can devote to this at home.

All students in Years 7-9 have the opportunity to make use of the school library during an English lesson at least once a fortnight. During this lesson, students are encouraged to develop their reading, both fiction and non-fiction.

On these pages you will find a selection of information and resources that will help you to support your child.  The link here also takes you to a fantastic collection of E-books 

What is the School’s Literacy Policy?

At Copleston we have an established Literacy Policy- please click on link below.

How is work marked for Literacy at Copleston?

A quick reference guide to the Copleston Marking Code used in English and in other subjects across the school.

Copleston Marking Code

How can we help students?

There are a number of ways in which we can all help and support students with their literacy.


Reading Aloud

Ten Top Tips - Help your child to Read

Accelerated Reader - A Guide for Parents


Ten Top Tips - Help your child to Spell


We also provide a curriculum to some students in years 7 and 8 who may require more in depth Literacy support. There are 2 classes in each year group- one X half and one Y half. There is a focus on students ‘graduating’ from literacy and returning to the full provision where appropriate and there are opportunities for students to join if there is professional and data based evidence.

There are also intervention forms for year 7 – 10. These students are selected from the professional recommendations of the English team and the data available. These forms begin at 8.30 and follow bespoke curriculums designed to further accelerate literacy levels for our students who need support, but are not in the Literacy groups. 

GOALs Curriculum Intent:

This curriculum is designed to run alongside English lessons, but remain a separate programme. This provision is not just extra English lessons.

The curriculum is designed around the structured practice of key skills that are needed to succeed in English and all other subjects in KS3 and 4. There is a focus on reading for comprehension, beginning to analyse texts, planning and writing structured, coherent texts in different forms.

The curriculum is underpinned by Accelerated Reader (AR) as a means to measure accuracy of reading comprehension and close the gap for our literacy catch up students. This is also embedded alongside the foundation 50 spellings list of high frequency, commonly misspelt words. This list has been selected with input from SEN and EAL departments.

The intent is to close the literacy gap to the point where students can succeed in all of their subjects on a par with their peers.


numeracy intervention at copleston 

We believe all students deserve the best opportunities to help them through their journey at school and to help them access the curriculum more. Numeracy Intervention at Copleston is clear- we select students who enter Copleston with SAT scores below 95 with the aim of improving their GCSE results by year 11 and to help prepare them for later life.

Our current intervention support at Copleston is delivered during the form time registration. We believe supporting our students whilst they are fresh in the morning motivates them for the rest of the day.

Experienced teachers work with the same group from year 7 to year 10. This allows for consistency as well as pastoral support to form strong relations.

Every student has an individual workbook which they use once the teacher has delivered the learning. The resource workbook is based fundamentally on improving numeracy, focusing on consolidating numeracy skills including fractions, decimals, percentages, general number skills and properties of shapes.  It is hoped that this will also promote independent learning

but we also include elements of the scheme of work to boost further understanding and confidence. It is hoped that this will promote independent learning.


Students who have previously been in intervention tutor groups have commented on how the support, on a little and often basis each day, really helped them to progress.


We will place the numeracy intervention resources on Satchel (our home learning area platform) so students can effectively continue their Numeracy work at home.


Catch up Actions

Actions being taken in Literacy and Numeracy can be found under the headings below:


Brief description


Numeracy Form Activities

As a part of the school’s drive to improve our Numeracy skills across the school, we have designed a range of activities for students to do during form time. Please see an example of some of the activities on our Pastoral Page.

Students have a Numeracy focus at the beginning of the day to encourage a positive attitude to behaviour for learning for the day ahead.

GOALs (Gaining and opportunity to Accelerate Literacy) Curriculum

Students who achieved a score of below 95 in Key Stage 2 are entered into the GOALs curriculum in lieu of a Modern Foreign Language. This curriculum is taught by English teachers to deliver a bespoke curriculum to enhance the skills needed to succeed in English and accelerate the progress of these students across the curriculum.

Students’ confidence increase as they receive the support that they need to thrive and access all areas of the curriculum. Progress data shows that students following the GOALS curriculum make good progress.

Literacy Intervention forms (year 7 and 8)

Led by English teachers, the intervention forms begin at 8:30 and give students an opportunity to immerse themselves in the Accelerated Reader programme. Students are recommended by the English department staff and through termly reviews of English assessment data.

Students receive bespoke support for their reading and are given the time to build their skills.

Literacy Intervention forms (year 9 and 10)

Led by English teachers, the intervention forms begin at 8:30 and give students an opportunity to work on skills that will help them achieve across the school. Students work on reading and writing tasks that are designed to make them more independent and confident. Students are recommended by the English department staff and through termly reviews of English assessment data.

Students receive intensive support to accelerate their progress in English and other subjects. Students see the improvement and in other subjects.