Eastbourne children improve skills thanks to training centre

YOUNG children have improved their reading, writing and maths skills thanks to a specialist training centre in Eastbourne.

The centre is based at Highfield Junior School in The Hydneye and has run two projects which have helped more than 250 pupils from Eastbourne and beyond. Children from across the county have been taking part in two programmes to improve literacy and numeracy levels; these have operated from the centre based at Highfield Junior School in Eastbourne.

Under one project, Every Child a Reader, 128 children have benefited this year from intensive one-to-one reading and writing support and tuition from their teachers.

This has led to significant progress with, on average, children moving up more than 15 book levels.

And in a separate scheme, Every Child Counts, which has also operated from the centre, 153 young pupils from 13 different schools across the county have benefited from similar intensive support with their basic maths skills.

These improvements have been impressive with the children making, on average, around 15 months worth of progress over the 12-week programme.

Cllr Nick Bennett, the council’s lead member for learning and school effectiveness, said, “This centre is doing marvellous things for those children who have difficulties in the early stages of their education.

“It’s so very important that we provide them with this intensive support so they have the foundations for their future learning. I am astonished by the progress they have made in a relatively short space of time.”

The dedicated centre at Highfield provides teachers with specialist training so they can give more intensive one-to-one support to pupils who need it most.

The teachers then work with the child concerned both in their own school and at the centre. They are also able to share their new skills with their colleagues within their own school.

This means children from across the county with the lowest attainment in literacy and numeracy in their first years of school get one-to-one support from a specially trained teacher over a period of several weeks.