School Excellence Fund

School Excellence Fund

This is a literacy initiative that has received funding from the Department of Education and Science. Three schools are involved in this project one secondary Enniscorthy Vocational College (EVC)  and two primary St. Aidans and St.Senans.The key aims are to improve literacy through an emphasis on aspects of:

a) oral language including social conventions and awareness of others, acquisition and use of vocabulary, categorisation, and information giving, explanation and justification and

b) the writing process

c) and then the ability to present the work orally and to build confidence and competence and improve well-being.

Carmel Donoghue a Department Inspector liaises with senior management and teachers in all the schools providing assistance and guidance in the roll out of the project. Literacy experts like Stephen Graham and Alan Sayles have also presented to teachers from all the schools providing insights into how to develop and improve literacy. Teachers from EVC have visited their counterparts in the primary schools and likewise the primary teachers have visited EVC. This has allowed teachers to observe how literacy is taught in the different setting and has assisted in developing greater communication between schools in the area of literacy.

Initially in EVC the following departments were involved Science, Maths and English. Two others Business and Geography have come on board this year with the overall objective that all departments would strive to increase the number of literacy strategies that they use in the classroom. All students in first and second year have received a literacy booklet where new words are recorded along with their explanation and their use in different contexts. Students have also been supplied with a dictionary so that they can become more proactive and self directed in their learning.

Throghout the project data is collected both quantitative and qualitative to determine what progress has been made and whether adjustments need to be made. Feedback so far has been extremely positive with students more confident with all aspects of literacy and the knock on impact is that students will be better equipped for examinations and life after school.