We were delighted to welcome the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham to Saint Paul’s Catholic High School, Wythenshawe, Greater Manchester. The Mayor was able to hear about our exciting programmes where our Year 10 pupils are helping the younger pupils from Newall Green Primary School with their reading and where mentors from the local organisation, BW3 (Business Working With Wythenshawe) visit the school to help our Year 7 with their reading.
As a school, we are very keen to promote a love of reading and the programme is designed to encourage a joy of reading and a love of books amongst both the Saint Paul’s and the Newall Green pupils. An additional benefit of the programme is that it brings the primary school children into contact with the senior school pupils allowing them to establish relationships so that the pupils feel comfortable about the move when the time comes to transfer from primary school to senior school. It creates stronger bonds between the schools and enables the primary school pupils to become more familiar with the secondary school.
Andy also got to meet with some of BW3’s team of reading mentors who have been visiting the school each week to develop confident, able readers.
Adam Jupp, chair of BW3, said: “BW3 is committed to delivering programmes that tackle the most important issues in the Wythenshawe area.
“There is clear evidence that improving literacy levels in young people goes a long way to boosting their career opportunities in the future and it has been inspirational to see the impact our team of mentors has had.”
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said: “Inspiring the next generation to develop a passion for reading is really important, and it was great to see how Saint Paul’s, Newell Green Primary and partners BW3 are working together to instil a love of reading in students.
“In Greater Manchester, we want to ensure no child is left behind and everybody has the opportunity to develop reading skills. We continue to lead the way in tackling issues such as school readiness by working with local authorities, schools and organisations to make sure young people have the best start and prospects in life.”
Mrs Charlotte Cooper, Assistant Headteacher and English teacher at Saint Paul’s, commented: “We want people to make reading a regular part of their routine whether they’re reading solo or together with their classmates, parents, or friends. We want to help both our pupils and those of our neighbouring primary schools to develop a life-long love of reading. It is very important to instil in young people a need and desire to read.”
“The more students read, and the more challenging their reading is, the more successful they will become in all subject areas and ultimately in life.”
“At Saint Paul’s we aim to empower our pupils to contribute to the local community and to lead change and innovation in Manchester and beyond,” explained Mr Alex Hren, Headteacher at Saint Paul’s. “Our staff and pupils are encouraged to step forward and make things happen and work in partnership with those in the local community to do this, we welcomed the opportunity to share with Andy just a small part of the work we undertake with our partners.”
“We are enjoying promoting reading across the school and seeing the benefits and pleasures of this both amongst our pupils and those of our local primary schools.”