Read for My School competition launches today

The National Schools Reading competition has launched today, with up to 200,000 children in years 5 and 6 at primary schools across England taking part.

The Read for My School scheme, from the Pearson Foundation and Booktrust, with support from the Department for Education, begins with more than 3,000 classrooms involved.

Children are challenged to read as many books as they can between now and 22nd March to win prizes for themselves and their school.

Each school will select one winner for two individual categories-the child who reads the most books, and the child who writes the most interesting responses to questions on the competition website after completing each book-with an expert panel then selecting one winner for each category in each of the nine regions in England. The 18 regional winners will be invited to attend a regional award ceremony hosted by a high-profile author in a local Waterstones shop in May, and prizes will include a £30 voucher for Waterstones, eight of the competition's Recommended Reads and 100 books for their school.

Two overall winners will be selected to be guests of honour at a national Read for My School event in London in June, and will win 1,000 books for their school, among other prizes.

Pearson, Penguin and DK are donating 100,000 books to children and schools who take part in the competition.

Children's author and Read for My School spokesperson Jeremy Strong said: "This is a brilliant opportunity for primary schools to win much needed books and at the same time encourage reading for pleasure."