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Main Literacy… And Perennial Issues

This quick sequence is focused at literacy leaders – both Literacy Coordinators, Studying Leads, or Curriculum Deputies and so on. – with a key position in main literacy to make sure that pupils entry the curriculum and achieve assembly the educational calls for of college. 

The outdated African proverb goes that it takes a village to boost a baby. In terms of the difficult activity of creating expert tutorial readers and writers, it additionally takes the proverbial village. 

Literacy leaders tackle varied guises in these important collective efforts of the ‘village’, from ‘literacy coordinators’, to ‘studying leads’, curriculum deputies, Belief leaders, and extra. They’re anticipated to know a wealth of points, interact their colleagues, implement change, and consider impression. Typically, it’s a activity that’s Sisyphean in scale. 

Regardless of the shared understanding of the significance of literacy, these position face perennial issues and near-insurmountable challenges.

5 frequent obstacles for literacy leaders 

An excessive amount of to know and do in too little time. It’s the omnipresent problem for college leaders – an absence of time to implement the cautious, sustained change that’s obligatory for improved follow within the classroom. The analysis proof that attends literacy can too usually appear so huge as to seem unmanageable.

Too little focus. So, what’s the literacy precedence of the varsity: what about bettering studying? Writing? Spelling? Grammar? Educational speak? Vocabulary? The checklist goes on and every downside and resolution work together with each other. The well-meaning steering to do ‘make fewer however extra strategic selections’ is more durable than it sounds in terms of main literacy.

Too little standing. It’s a frequent incidence for literacy roles to be perceived as junior management alternatives. This notion is flawed as too little standing can imply that college leaders lack the levers to enact change, they’ll lack the funds, and in the end the authority obligatory for the position. Lecturers comply with folks, not insurance policies, so the literacy lead wants significant authority and belief.

Too disconnected from different priorities and practices. Busy academics are assailed by priorities. When it comes all the way down to it, understandably, classroom administration and curriculum ‘protection’ can supersede advanced and nuanced modifications to the way you train tutorial writing or tips on how to develop pupils who’re battling spelling. 

An excessive amount of reliance on a coverage. You may enshrine a list of purposeful approaches in a effectively organised literacy coverage doc, however then…effectively, faculty occurs! Busy academics can wrestle to comply with insurance policies (and even learn them!). For example, what’s a science instructor to make of supporting writing if they’re comparatively untrained? How assured is a 12 months 5 instructor following the same old spelling coverage when a dyslexic pupil is exhibiting advanced particular person wants? 

So, what’s the resolution for beleaguered literacy leads? Nicely, there is no such thing as a magic wand right here. That is troublesome work, in compromised situations, requiring ample effort and doubtless some luck too. 

Finally although, it’s a activity price taking over. There isn’t a faculty enchancment precedence that may out-do that of serving to a baby to study to learn and write, and to go on to learn and write to study. It could take the entire village, and sensible literacy leads, however it’s critical work price doing.


This quick sequence presents literacy leads of all stripes and phases to discover some helpful concepts and techniques. Listed below are the proposed subjects for upcoming blogs within the sequence:

  • Main Literacy…And Influencing Lecturers
  • Main Literacy…And Purposeful Skilled Growth
  • Main Literacy…And Speaking Complexity
  • Main Literact…And Evaluating Influence