Better Reading Support Partners: Reading together - succeeding together

Provider: Every Child Counts
£410.00 (no VAT on this item) approx price for one TA and a link teacher, with resources
£260.00 (no VAT on this item) approx price for a second TA with resources
Accreditation opportunities: Schools can become accredited ECC schools

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Description This course trains teaching assistants to deliver the highly effective Better Reading Support Partners intervention to pupils in Years 1 to 10 who have fallen behind at reading. High-quality training enables them to deliver the intervention effectively and to strengthen their support for writing across the school. Over 300 teaching assistants have already been trained and have supported pupils to make 12 months' progress in only 3 months.
Duration 2 days

Every Child Counts's website
Categories Primary, Secondary, Teaching and Learning, KS1, KS2, KS3, English / Literacy, Support Staff, Learning Support, Pupil Support, Inclusion, SEND, Out of school, In school, Feedback, Meta-cognition and Self-regulation, One-to-one, Teaching Assistants, Use of Pupil Premium, Identifies activities where TAs can support learning, rather than managing tasks, Ensures that teachers do not reduce their support or input to the pupils supported by TAs , Evaluates the impact of different strategies for deploying TAs, Tuition lead by qualified teacher, as a qualified teacher is likely to have greater impact on learners’ progress , Grouping for intensive support of one-to-two or even one-to-three, Short periods (5-10 weeks) of intensive sessions , Tuition is linked explicitly linked to what happens in class, Provides approaches for specific, accurate and clear feedback , Provides approaches for comparing what a learner is doing right now and wrong before , Provides approaches for a balance between support and challenge, Supports effective professional development for teachers, Provides teaching approaches which encourage learners to plan, monitor and evaluate their learning with careful implementation, Provides approaches to teach pupils explicit strategies to plan, to monitor and to evaluate their learning with and without support, Provides teaching approaches which encourage pupil engagement in planning and best approaches to tasks, Evaluation of process , Help schools find best way to spend Pupil Premium
Learning outcomes for participants/users and, where relevant, pupils or students

A trained Better Reading Support Partner helps schools to make a real difference
for pupils who have fallen behind at reading

This course trains teaching assistants to deliver the BRSP intervention.

BRSP is a highly effective, ‘light touch’ reading intervention for pupils in Years 1 to 10 who have fallen behind at reading.  A trained Partner gives them one-to-one support to help them to make faster progress and catch up with their peers.

BRSP is an Every Child Counts intervention, developed by Edge Hill University.  Expert training enables teaching assistants to deliver it and to strengthen their support for reading across the school.

How it works

A Better Reading Support Partner provides a 10-week programme of three individual 15-minute support sessions per week for selected pupils.  Pupils read three texts in every session. 

The Partner uses simple and effective assessments to inform the selection of a carefully structured sequence of texts that are finely tuned to the pupil’s skills and interests.  The Partner provides a relaxed environment that gives the pupil the time and space both to practise and apply their skills and to talk about their reading with an interested adult.  The whole programme provides a balanced approach to developing phonic skills, comprehension and the independent enjoyment of reading.

The Partner can be a teaching assistant or other adult who has a working knowledge of synthetic phonics, or an experienced user of the former Better Reading Partners intervention who wishes learn how it has been updated and replaced by Better Reading Support Partners.  The Partner is supported by a Link Teacher who manages the partnership in school and acts as the main link with the school’s senior leadership team, class teachers and parents.

“BRSP has been a great success in our school.  It has been amazing to observe the confidence that children have gained in their reading skills.  As a result of the quality training our teaching assistants received, we have a highly skilled human resource to support our children.”
Janice Owen, Headteacher, Longlands Primary School, Bexley

Evidence underpinning this approach

Better Reading Support Partners is based on research into effective literacy intervention.

Over 3,000 pupils in Years 1 to 8 have been supported by Better Reading Support Partners in 250 schools.

  • They made an average Reading Age gain of 12 months in only 3 months – four times the expected progress
  • 99% of them showed more interest and confidence in reading in class after BRSP

 “BRSP has given each pupil the help that they need.  For example, Mark has learned to slow down and think about the meaning of what he’s reading while Jo has stopped sounding every word out and now reads fluently.”
David Weaver, SENCO, Windermere Preparatory School, Cumbria

In an independent survey of the Head Teachers of Every Child Counts schools:

  • 90% rated it as ‘highly valuable’
  • 74% said they were ‘extremely likely’ to recommend ECC to another school
  • 89% identified significant impact on standards across the school
How users/participants can evaluate success

The immediate impact is seen in the progress of children who take part in BRSP. BRSP link teachers are trained to use a standardised test to assess children’s reading attainment on entry to and exit from the intervention. They use an online data system to record information about children’s participation and progress. Each school receives a termly report with detailed analyses of children’s progress and national comparisons against which they can benchmark their school’s outcomes.

Schools can expect to see big changes in teaching assistants' subject knowledge, confidence and ability to support pupils' mathematics in all aspects of their work beyond the intervention.

“The professional development, ethos and values imparted by Every Child Counts have had such a big impact on the teaching assistant leading 1st[email protected] that we have changed the way we use support staff. Teaching assistants are now organised into subject specialist teams for mathematics and literacy… and they find it rewarding to have such a strong focus to their role.  It has also helped me to ensure that appropriate provision is targeted where it is most needed.  This supports the school in its aim of raising attainment for all our children.’’

Schools can also expect to see improvements in link teachers' management of interventions.

Follow-up activities and support

Teaching assistants begin to teach children immediately after the first day of training and are encouraged to discuss ther experiences and children’s learning


“Many head teachers took an interest in the training and reported that it was the best they had ever seen.”
Independent Evaluation of ECC, DfE 2011

Training is delivered by an ECC Trainer accredited by Edge Hill University.  It includes:

  • a 2-day training course for Partners
    • selecting suitable texts and delivering BRSP sessions
    • understanding the reading process
    • talking with pupils about their reading and learning
  • school Link Teachers attend the first half day and can opt to attend the full course
  • detailed handbook guidance for Partners and Link Teachers
  • an optional 1-day introduction to phonics for Partners

Schools also receive a one-year ECC support package including:

  • online guidance and downloadable resources
  • access to the ECC online data system, providing detailed analyses of children’s progress to help schools to evaluate and demonstrate the impact of BRSP
  • telephone and e-mail support
  • an optional visit to the school by the Trainer to support the delivery, management and evaluation of BRSP
  • opportunities for Every Child Counts accreditation

Training and support for all ECC programmes are available from local ECC Providers accredited by Edge Hill University and from the University itself.

This course does not have any pre-booked dates available. Please contact the provider directly to arrange this training.