Reading scheme axed due to school spending cuts

Reading scheme axed due to school spending cuts

A primary schools project that has helped thousands of struggling young pupils to read is being axed by the government, according to the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT).

The Reading Recovery Project involves daily one-to-one half hour reading sessions with pupils. According to research by London University's Institute of Education, the project improves literacy over a short and long term period.

Russell Hobby, the NAHT general secretary, told the Independent the Reading Recovery Project was the single most important scheme to tackle reading problems of slow learners. Labour had invested £144m in the scheme over three years to train 18,000 teachers in implementing the scheme. However, Hobby said schools have had to abandon it because of the squeeze on budgets.

A spokesperson for the Department of Education said it was targeting pupils from deprived backgrounds using the £430 "pupil premium". He said: "We've secured the best possible settlement for schools considering the harsh economic situation and we've given schools complete freedom over every aspect of their budgets. We trust heads to know the needs of their own schools and where the money needs to be spent to make the biggest impact."