Project focus

    Harnessing the principles of the highly effective KS2 Reading Fluency Project, the KS3 project aims to accelerate achievement in reading fluency and comprehension in a short space of time. Strategies used on the project include:

    • modelled expressive reading
    • echo reading
    • repeated re-reading
    • skilled questioning
    • challenging text selection
    • modelled comprehension skills

    Precise assessment data is collected at the start and end of the 8-week project for participating pupils so accelerated progress can be clearly tracked.

    The Education Endowment Foundation - Improving Literacy in Secondary Schools document suggests, as one of the top recommendations that  ‘Training focused on teaching reading is likely to help secondary school teachers teach their subject more effectively’.. And that ‘Schools should expect and proactively plan to support students with the weakest levels of literacy, particularly in Year 7.’

    The Ofsted 2019 Education Inspection Framework states that ‘a rigorous approach to the teaching of reading develops learners’ confidence and enjoyment in reading’ and states that learners should ‘read widely and often, with fluency and comprehension’. The Key Stage 3 Reading Fluency Project will actively support schools in achieving these aims. 

    The project is being delivered within schools in Hertfordshire, and is also available nationally as it is being delivered via live webinar.

    Participate in this project

    The next round of this project will launch on Thursday 22nd April 2021 and has been re-designed to be delivered online with a series of webinars and remote access options:

    Project design

    Participants will receive the project CPD through:

    • a project launch, incorporating 3 sessions
      • Session 1 will be pre-recorded and can be accessed two weeks prior to the launch day
      • Session 2: will be delivered via two live webinars over the course of one day
    • a twilight session (delivered as a live webinar)
    • a 2-hour in-school visit (this can be delivered remotely, if necessary)
    • a final review (delivered as a live webinar) 

    Please note: Live sessions are recorded and will be available to access for one week after delivery.

    In addition, schools will be supplied with assessment materials, which will support in judging the impact of the project. The HfL advisory team will mark and analyse the assessment materials, providing the pre-intervention data outcomes at the school visit and the post-intervention data outcomes at the final review.

    The project cost covers the inclusion of one teacher (who will deliver the sessions) and a project lead (this may be the Head of English).

    Please visit the HfL CPDHub for full details and how to book here: Course code: ENG/20/1022/A

    Impact/outcomes expected

    Students who participated in the trial of the KS3 project, made an average of 15 months progress in reading comprehension age over the 8-week project (involving 17 pupils).

    (Pupils on the KS2 version of the project, in which 117 schools have participated, made an average of +2 years and 3 months progress in reading comprehension age over the 8-week project.)

    Pupils typically demonstrated improvements in reading behaviour in terms of:

    • stamina – able to read more text for a longer period whilst retaining understanding
    • accuracy – students make fewer substitutions, omissions, mispronunciations and additions when reading a ‘cold’ text
    • enjoyment – students read more and are more willing to explore a wider range of literature
    • confidence – students tackle challenging texts with greater willingness and show improved tenacity in teasing out meaning
    • engagement – students offer more extended contributions in group discussions about challenging texts

    Research report

    The Institute of Effective Education research found that the HFL KS2 Reading Fluency Project had a positive impact on developing pupils’ reading accuracy and comprehension, as measured by the YARC.

    Reading fluency

    Blogs to read:

    KS3 (Year 7) Reading Fluency Project: text selection guidance

    Read like nobody is watching

    As easy as A B fluency!

    Repeat after me: the HfL KS2 reading fluency project works... works... works!

    Dr Timothy Rasinski is professor of literacy education at Kent State University and member of International Reading Hall of Fame. Please see our collaborative blog:

    The Herts for Learning (HfL) KS2 Reading Fluency Project – Strategies and Outcomes


    In the Reading Corner, the Just Imagine podcast: Reading Fluency with Penny Slater

    Project contact

    Penny Slater
    Deputy Primary English Teaching and Learning Adviser
    Tel: 01438 544464

    Contact details

    Express an interest