Seeking star literacy schemes

Winners and sponsors plus Nick Butterworth (front, centre) at the Kent Literacy Awards 2019

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Schools using successful ways to encourage children to read, write and love the English language could be in line for a Kent Literacy Award.

Any primary, secondary, or special school in Kent can enter – and there is a wide range of categories to choose from including most inspiring book corner, best speaking competition, most engaging writing topic, and best use of drama.

Previous winners have included a magical storyland-themed library, a cosy reading café and a Harry Potter-themed Book Week. Another school ran family sessions where pupils could learn exciting new things with their parents – including archery and musical instrument making – while improving their communication skills.

The Kent Literacy Awards is a KM Charity Team initiative and supported by organisations including Golding Homes, The Education People, Hempstead House, KM Facilities Management and the Kent and Medway councils.

Awards coordinator, Karen Brinkman, said: “Each year the standard gets higher, making it very difficult to choose the best of the best. Last year’s entries created huge excitement about all aspects of literacy from a ‘reading pizza party’ and a Makaton signing choir to a school-wide public speaking event.

“Schools provide wonderful opportunities and experiences, both in-school and elsewhere, to help their students develop language and vocabulary and enrich their writing. Don’t hide your light under a bushel – I urge schools to nominate their fantastic themes, schemes and programmes for recognition.”

Winning schools will be invited to an awards ceremony at the Hempstead House Hotel near Sittingbourne in July. Last year’s event boasted acclaimed children’s author and illustrator Nick Butterworth as a special guest speaker.

Details of the award-winning schemes will be incorporated into a digital awards programme booklet to create a best practice document. This will be available for free download to inspire other schools to follow their lead.

The deadline for entries is noon on Friday, May 1. For more information, visit www.KentLiteracyAwards.co.uk

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