Literacy in key stage 3 - June 2012


This report is the first of a series looking at standards in literacy at key stage 3 and how a sample of secondary schools is currently developing pupils’ literacy skills across the curriculum. Later reports will focus on the implementation and impact of the National Literacy Programme on standards and provision in these schools. The National Literacy and Numeracy Framework will be made available for consultation from June 2012. The final version will be published in January 2013. The National Literacy and Numeracy Framework will become a statutory requirement in all schools from September 2013.


Schools should:

  • make developing literacy skills a priority in improvement plans and schemes of work;
  • track and monitor the progress of all pupils, particularly those on intervention programmes and more able learners, to make sure that they make good progress across all key stages;
  • map opportunities for oracy, reading and writing across the curriculum, particularly in improving pupils’ extended writing and the accuracy of their written work;
  • monitor and evaluate the impact of strategies for improving literacy; and
  • train teachers to plan more challenging opportunities in all subjects to develop pupils’ higher-order reading and writing skills.

Local authorities should:

  • produce a well-developed literacy strategy and mechanisms to improve standards across the curriculum; and
  • support schools in training all staff to use effective literacy strategies, including sharing best practice between schools.

The Welsh Government should:

  • provide guidance and support for teacher to help them to implement the National Literacy and Numeracy Framework and develop literacy skills across the curriculum.

Best practice case studies

You can read the following example of best practice in the main body of the report:

  •  Cyfarthfa High School, Merthyr Tydfil

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