Reading in school
As primary schools reopen for another academic year, many will be opening their doors to parents and other volunteers who give up their time to listen to children read in the classroom. The arrangement is commonplace and ensures that children get an opportunity to practise their reading skills with an adult, even if they don’t get to read at home with their own parents. However, earlier this summer, Jo Saxton – an education expert who has advised the current and previous governments on the primary curriculum – said that parents who go into state schools to listen to children read lack the skills to raise standards. She believes that the teaching of reading should be left to qualified teachers alone. So are parents who volunteer in this way wasting their time, or worse – doing damage? Jenni is joined by Jo and Pete Mountstephen, the chair of the National Association of Primary Headteachers.