Literacy is fundamental for academic achievement and success in life beyond the classroom. If students are not able to read, write and communicate effectively (with fluency and at an age appropriate level) they will be unable to access the rest of the curriculum. We strive to ensure that students master the relevant literacy skills: ‘The Big Four’ (Reading, Writing, Vocabulary and Spoken Language) to enable them to have successful educational outcomes across all subjects.

We believe that the driving force to unlocking the full curriculum is reading. Reading will be the master skill of the college, unlocking the academic curriculum for our learners. Through prioritising reading, children have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. As learners progress through school, they experience a gradual increase in reading skill and challenge. It is vital that at each step teachers recognise the fundamental causes of reading barriers faced by learners, while helping our learners negotiate the ever-increasing trajectory of challenge in the texts they read.

As such, all staff at St. John Bosco Arts College, are committed to developing literacy skills in all of our learners, in the belief that it will support their learning and raise standards across the curriculum, because:

  • learners need vocabulary, expression and organisational control to cope with the cognitive demands of subjects
  • reading helps us to learn from sources beyond our immediate experience
  • writing helps us to sustain and order thought
  • vocabulary helps us to reflect, revise and evaluate what we do, and on what others have said, written or done
  • responding to higher order questions encourages the development of thinking skills and enquiry
  • Improving literacy and learning can have an impact on learners’ self-esteem, motivation and behaviour. It allows them to learn independently. It is empowering


Literacy Policy 2022

Pupils' literacy skills are well developed. Teachers routinely follow the school’s policy on literacy by developing key subject-specific terminology and assessing pupils' work for spelling, punctuation and grammar’

OFSTED November 2016 

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