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Leading Literacy Across the Curriculum

Coach Lane Campus


This conference will focus upon the supporting school leaders to strategically develop pupils’ literacy knowledge, skills and understanding within the whole secondary curriculum. There will be key contributions from both Alex Quigley, a nationally recognised expert in the field, and the National Literacy Trust. The conference will also spotlight the work undertaken by four schools in the region as they seek to develop whole school approaches to embedding literacy throughout their curriculum.  

The conference is aimed at senior and middle leaders in secondary schools.

Keynote Speaker

The keynote speaker will be Alex Quigley. Alex works as the National Content Manager at the Education Endowment Foundation, supporting teachers to engage with evidence and develop their practice in order to improve pupil outcomes. He was a teacher and school leader for fifteen years, at Huntington School in York. Alex also writes books for teachers, including 'Closing the Vocabulary Gap' and the upcoming follow-up in the series, 'Closing the Reading Gap'.

Alex will lead 2 sessions over the course of the day:

  • 'Closing the vocabulary Gap': Alex explores the challenge at the heart of the school curriculum - our pupils access to the crucial academic language of school. First, he explores the evidence that attends the vocabulary gap, before going on to share practical solutions for teachers.

  • 'Tackling the challenge of whole school literacy': Alex presents the challenges and opportunities of tackling literacy in our schools, ranging from talk, reading and writing. He recognises why many attempts to implement whole school literacy fail, before offering strategies to succeed.

Other Speakers 

  • Literacy for Learning’ Nisha Tank, National Literacy Trust. Nisha is programme manager for the NLT’s Literacy for Learning project, a whole school literacy improvement programme for secondary schools

  • School led workshops. Four secondary schools from the region will share how they have approached literacy development across the whole curriculum. They will discuss their successes, as well as the ongoing challenges

Conference Programme

Please click on the links below for further information on the programme, workshops and venue:

Conference Workshops

When booking please select TWO workshops out of the four available. 

Workshop 1: “Starting from Scratch: no experience and no discipline”

Andrew Swan – Head of Music and Lead for Literacy and Oracy, Kenton School

This workshop focuses on beginning as a non-literacy specialist and developing a whole school plan to improve literacy and Oracy, with a particular focus initially on broadening vocabulary and building the ability to decode and use Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary across all subjects …not to mention developing oracy!

Workshop 2: “Knowing what you don’t know”

Kerry Payne, Director of English/ Literacy Lead, and Ashleigh Holmes ,Lead for Oracy ,James Calvert Spence

In education, we are all trying to improve the literacy levels of our young people but what about our staff? JCSC has been on a rapid journey to “close the gap” with both their employees and their students in terms of reading, writing and oracy. It all comes down to, “Knowing what you don’t know...”

Workshop 3: “Our Road to Better Reading”

Louise Lancaster – Lead for Literacy, St Aidan’s Academy

This workshop will follow St Aidan's journey to build a culture of reading for enjoyment. We will explore the introduction and development of DEAR  across the whole school  and discuss the impact of 'Reciprocal Reading' within our reading lessons at Key Stage 3.

Workshop 4: “Building a Community dedicated to reading”

Dawn Tait and colleagues, Berwick Academy

Staff will present their work on the Berwick Academy library project, involvement with local authors, book donations and the development of student librarians. We will also explore the impact of our Reading Recovery Programme.

Conference Fee and Booking 

Event Details

Coach Lane Campus
Hall B, Block C
Northumbria University


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