Oxford Academy

Literacy Focus

At The Oxford Academy, all staff are committed to developing and improving students’ literacy skills enabling students to access all aspects of the curriculum.  With parents/carers support, we can aim to equip students with the literacy skills that are essential to the life chances of our students and the success of our school.


“We are all aware that levels of literacy on entry to our school are some of the lowest in the country.  This has been regularly noted by both Ofsted and the DfE. We must ensure that our Literacy Programme is sustained every day, every month, every year.  We must also remember that we are all teachers of literacy.”  The Oxford Academy

General Expectations

  • All departments will identify and explicitly teach those aspects of literacy that are relevant to their subject area.
  • All departments will use the literacy marking codes to support pupils in correcting weaknesses in their work.

Effective strategies for teaching Writing:

  • Providing models and success criteria for written work so that the features of the expected style are made explicit to students.
  • Providing opportunities for students to write in a range of styles and for a variety of purposes.
  • Identification and focus on key vocabulary and commonly misspelled words, expecting students to take action when spelling errors have been identified. 
  • Allow time for students to review their work before submitting it to ensure that students are checking for basic errors and using any opportunity to develop ideas, striving for accurate expression.
  • Use the literacy pages in the planner to support the use of connectives and writing for different non-fiction purposes.

Effective strategies for teaching Reading:

  • Bespoke reading programmes for targeted students.
  • Timetabled Library lessons for Years 7, 8 and 9 to engage students in reading a variety of texts that are suitably challenging.  
  • Ensuring that students are exposed to reading material which is appropriately challenging for their current level of capability.
  • Identifying and working with key words.
  • Exploring structural features of a text.
  • Explicitly teaching different reading strategies.

Effective strategies for teaching Speaking and Listening:

  • Using different types of questions to challenge students and encourage high levels of participation and accountability.
  • Expecting students to be precise and detailed in their response to questions, using appropriate vocabulary.
  • Opportunities for students to be involved in public speaking activities.