Worrying article: Driver Youth Trust - suggesting a 'focus on phonics' excludes children with special needs

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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Re: Worrying article suggesting a 'focus on phonics' excludes children with special needs

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Mon Mar 27, 2017 5:56 pm

Dr Marlynne Grant points out that systematic synthetic phonics provision works with 'all' children. She writes:

“This longitudinal research has shown that Systematic Synthetic Phonics (SSP) is effective for the reading, spell and writing skills of all children, not just for the high-flyers and middle band children but also the slow-to-start and special needs children as well. The research showed that SSP is successful even with children starting Reception with the lowest level of language and with low social skills on school entry. SSP is successful with children starting Reception with no pre-established letter(s)-sound correspondences and with no prior reading or spelling skills. It is also effective with children thought to be vulnerable and disadvantaged because of factors such as gender, socio-economic group, first language not English, age (summer birthdays), struggling learners, children with attention difficulties and those with significant social, emotional and behavioural difficulties.“


Here is Dr Grant's paper on two studies based on systematic synthetic phonics provision for a range of children of varying capabilities:

http://www.rrf.org.uk/pdf/Grant%20Follo ... 202014.pdf

I think Dr Grant's studies are important and they contribute to the bigger picture of 'findings'. I reference Dr Grant's studies in my article for Special Educational Needs magazine here:

https://senmagazine.co.uk/articles/arti ... or-phonics
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Re: Worrying article suggesting a 'focus on phonics' excludes children with special needs

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Tue May 16, 2017 5:30 pm

I raised this issue about organisations undermining phonics provision suggesting that some children need something different from phonics at a talk I provided for researchED in Oxford.
I then blogged about it and provided the PowerPoint presentation online.

See in particular slides 35 to 38:

https://phonicsintervention.org/2017/04 ... pril-2017/
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Debbie_Hepplewhite
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Re: Worrying article: Driver Youth Trust - suggesting a 'focus on phonics' excludes children with special needs

Postby Debbie_Hepplewhite » Wed Aug 08, 2018 2:01 pm

It is very good to see that Karen Wespieser notes the flaws in the conclusions made about a phonics check survey:


Early years literacy – let’s make sure we are getting it right (for everyone)

August 8, 2018

Karen Wespieser

In the light of two new reports on early years literacy, DYT’s new Director of Operations, Karen Wespieser, looks at the role of parents and how important it is to get research methodology right before making grand claims about schools.


https://www.driveryouthtrust.com/df/ear ... -everyone/

Contrast this with a new report from Leeds Beckett University. This research into the phonics screening check (PSC) also sought to focus on parents. It made the bold claims in the research press release that the PSC is “pointless”. It cited parents, teacher and school leader’s views on the PCS as fact. Yet when you look at the methodology behind the research, you find that it is based on a self-selecting sample. While they have gathered data from a large number of people, these are only the views of those that felt they had something to say on the topic. A more representative sample might have provided a very different perspective and researchers should be aware of how different methodologies can introduce bias to their work. This is more akin to a trip advisor rating – where only those most irate take the time to feedback – than research which is both robust and significant, which furthers our understanding of this important debate.


And I totally agree with Karen's summing up paragraph:

Literacy in the early years is an emotive topic, and therefore difficult for policy makers and researchers alike. Yet it’s because, and not despite, of this that we need to ensure that the work we do is the most significant and robust. Anything else is simply doing young people, their parents and their schools a disservice.

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