More than half of the pupils taking part in the National Literacy Trust's Premier League Reading Stars scheme in 2012 made six months' progress in reading while taking part in the programme, a report from the NLT has said. Seventeen per cent made a whole year's progress, according to the charity.
Research into the 34,000 young people who took part in the scheme, which first ran in 2003, found that 56% made the equivalent of six months progress in reading over the 10 weeks of the scheme. Six out of ten read more in their own time following the scheme, with 76% saying they enjoyed reading more and were inspired to read by footballers.
Overall, 472 primary schools, 232 secondary schools, 31 libraries, 15 football clubs and one pupil referral unit took part. Thirty-two per cent of the children were from low-income families.
The scheme, administered by the National Literacy Trust, is backed by the Premier League and Arts Council England. It sees 20 Premier League football players set five literacy challenges, which then form the basis of the 100 multiple-choice quizzes children are challenged to complete online. Teachers, librarians and coaches also deliver 10 football-themed literacy sessions in class.
The programme for 2013 will be announced later this month.
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