The DfE have provided some key information below, based on an analysis of the match-funding data from September 2011 to the end of October 2013 which showed that:
- A total of £23.7 million match-funding (including VAT) was claimed by around 14,300 schools, 80% of eligible schools.
- Approximately 84% of eligible schools with key stage 1 pupils claimed match-funding (around 13,900 schools).
- Around 1,260 schools with key stage 2 pupils became eligible for match-funding from January 2013. Of these around 390 claimed match-funding (31%).
- Most of the funding (95%) was used to purchase phonics products rather than training.
We would like to thank you all for your support and hard work from the start of the process in 2011 to date and for making the initiative a success. We would appreciate any feedback (good, bad or indifferent) that you have about the initiative including the procurement and the operational management of the contracts. Please reply by return by Tuesday 22nd April.
As you can see, Pro5 hail the initiative as a ‘success’. I don’t! Although I’ve always thought it essential for schools to support the development of pupils’ reading skills through the medium of phonics books and other materials, I’ve also consistently made the point that it was a huge mistake not to place the emphasis on training. As I have always argued on this blog (here and here), most education officials at government and local authority level, heads and senior management team staff have never really understood the need for a thorough and intensive training in the why and how to teach phonics.