We are pleased to announce that the Education Endowment Foundation has chosen to fund a large scale evaluation of the REAL (Raising Early Achievement in Literacy) programme in collaboration with the University of Sheffield. The REAL Programme underpins NCB’s Making it REAL programme, raising early achievement in literacy through training Early Years staff across the country, and NCB will lead delivery of this EEF funded project.
The evaluation is one of a small number of projects chosen by EEF as part of its work to build evidence around improving the home learning environment, in order to better promote the development of children aged 0-5 from low-income families.
The EEF has partnered with the Department for Education and Leeds-based education charity SHINE to test projects that support parents to improve their children’s learning and development before they start school.
The REAL Programme is a targeted intervention which aims to support literacy development by working with children and parents to improve the home learning environment. REAL will train one teacher in each of 60 schools, with each teacher working with eight children. Practitioners will be given four days of continuing professional development and will conduct up to 10 home visits for each child, alongside a number of literacy events for parents and carers.
The trial will be evaluated by a team from NatCen with support from the National Children’s Bureau and their report will be published in autumn 2021.
Annamarie Hassall MBE, Director of Practice and Programmes, said:
‘NCB is committed to every child getting the best start in life, because we know that the early years are the foundation on which a person’s future life chances are built. We are delighted that EEF has recognised the potential of the REAL project and we look forward to this independent evaluation building on existing evidence highlighting the effectiveness of the REAL approach.’