A new enthusiasm for reading is sweeping through the Wey Valley Campus, where students of St Nicholas and St Laurence Primary and the Wey Valley School are reaping the benefits of a £10,000 grant to fund an accelerated reading programme.

Both schools had extra funding for new books as a result of a successful bid to the Foyle Foundation. The grant has helped to provide a huge range of new books to suit all abilities, from bestsellers to brand new copies of the old classics.


Phil Thomas, principal at Wey Valley, said: “In just a few short weeks over 610 books and 10.5 million words have been read and understood by our students. Some students are expected to reach individual milestones of one million words read by Christmas.
“This is all down to the pace and engagement of students and excellent support from staff during lessons and the many extra lunchtime and after-school sessions that are now available.
“The accelerated reading programme has ignited a love of books and created a real culture of reading among our students in years 7 and 8.”
Each time a student completes their book they take an on-line quiz which tests their understanding of what they have read.
Eileen Glynn, who spearheaded the successful grant and oversees the Learning Resource Centre at Wey Valley, said: “The positive response to the scheme has exceeded all expectations and the Learning Resource Centre has been packed out during both break and lunchtimes with students queuing to either change their book or take their quiz.

“These are exciting times! I could never have imagined such a dramatic change in our student’s reading habits, especially the boys who are traditionally more reluctant to pick up a book.”

Helen Williams, head-teacher at St Nicholas and St Laurence Primary School, said: “Our Year 5 and 6 pupils are enjoying the additional books provided by the grant and we are already seeing improved reading by all our pupils.”

Year 8 student Michaela Warr said: "It’s made me read a lot more and has already improved my spellings.”

And fellow student Sophie Downes said: "I actually didn't like reading before but now I am loving it and I'm really into the Jacqueline Wilson books"