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COMMUNITY: Joint Literacy collaboration launched with William Howard School

5 May 2016

Carlisle United and William Howard join forces with reading project

As part of a joint Literacy collaboration between William Howard School and Carlisle United Football Club, players came into school on Thursday 5 May 2016.

During the visit players visited the Library and met with students who were taking part in a reading lesson. They also met with students who will be representing the school in Holland at a football tournament later this year.

Boys’ underachievement in reading is a significant concern for schools across the country. In a National Literacy Trust survey, 76% of UK schools said boys in their school did not do as well in reading as girls. 82% of schools have developed their own strategies to tackle this. 

Tracey Hill, Literacy Lead at William Howard said: “It has been fantastic having the opportunity to work with our local football team. The club has allowed our media students to come along to a training session to film the players talking about their current favourite books and those from childhood. The players coming into school will cause real excitement amongst the students and demonstrate how sport and literacy can work together.”

The Carlisle United players are promoting a summer competition inspired by the Barclay Premier Reading Stars. The competition will have stages where students need to take books from the library and complete top trump cards or match reports about the books and their characters.  

The stages are linked to Euro 2016 and include group stages, semi-finals and a final with a Champions Award for the overall winner. Within the PE department, staff are encouraging literacy as part of their warm up sessions for activities. The film made by the William Howard School Media students will be shown on TV screens across school and in assemblies to support the schools work on promoting reading at all ages.

Carlisle United’s media officer Andy Hall said: “We were delighted when we were asked to help William Howard with this new reading initiative and we think it’s a fantastic idea. The difficulty of getting boys to engage with reading is an issue which has cropped up repeatedly in recent years and if we can help to improve that, even in a small way, we will all be extremely pleased. 

"The looks on the faces of the children when the players walked into the library to help launch the project reminded us just how much of an impact professional footballers can have, and we are looking forward to seeing the end product when we get back together to judge the work done at the end of June.”

The prizes will be donated from the team and presented by them at the end of June.

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