UK Reading Reform Foundation 2008 London Conference Date Announced

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The United Kingdom Reading Reform Foundation today announced its 2008 London Conference is to be held at The Clore Management Centre, Birkbeck College, 25 - 27 Torrington Square, London WC1 on Friday 7th November 2008. The theme for this years conference will be 'Waste', where speakers will discuss how time and money is still being wasted in the UK education system and the resulting 'waste of lives' because of the use of non-science based methods of teaching reading.

As usual, the RRF have an impressive list of speakers lined up for the event including a range of experts in teaching reading using a science-based method including psychology professors, synthetic phonics programme developers, a special education unit manager and a head teacher; their experience and expertise covers all age groups from nursery to adult.

Speakers so far include:

Nick Gibb MP
Nick Gibb is Conservative Shadow Minister for Schools. His talk will be on the campaign to ensure that synthetic phonics is used in schools and will include time for questions.

Rhona Johnston
Professor of Psychology at the University of Hull, joint researcher on the famous Clackmannanshire project which proved beyond all doubt that synthetic phonics is much more effective than other types of phonics teaching.

Dr. Marlynne Grant
Chartered educational psychologist and author of the high quality phonics programme, Sound Discovery.

Lorna Jackson
Headteacher of Maryland Primary School, Newham. A premier synthetic phonics programme is used throughout the school from nursery onwards. In the 2006 KS1 SATs, 83% of pupils who
had received phonics teaching from YR achieved level 2+.

Katie Ivens
Co-founder and Education Director of the Butterfly Saturday Reading School; 150 children aged between 5yrs and 12yrs are taught to read through phonics in classes held on Saturday mornings. Adult literacy is also taught.

Marj Newbury
Reception teacher and foundation stage co-ordinator at Byron Primary School, Bradford; 98 per cent of the pupils are Muslim and speak English as an additional language. She has been using synthetic phonics extremely successfully for 14 years.

Jim Curran
Trained as an educational psychologist, has taught at secondary level for 33 years.
Jim is manager of the Special Education Unit, De La Salle High school in Downpatrick, N. Ireland.

Diane McGuinness
Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Florida, a world authority on synthetic phonics and author of the influential book, 'Why Children Can't Read'.

Fiona Nevola
Former Head of English in two schools over a period of fourteen years, author of the
outstanding phonics intervention programme, the Sound Reading System, which is being used
in Young Offenders institutions among other places.

Who should attend?
Anyone who is concerned about education and literacy, i.e. teachers from all sectors of education, parents, carers, teaching assistants, head teachers, local authority advisors, teaching consultants, those working in the prison service, academics, publishers, journalists, policy advisors, members of parliament ...

About the Reading Reform Foundation (RRF)
The Reading Reform Foundation is a non-profit-making organisation. It was founded by educators and researchers who were concerned about the high functional illiteracy rates among children and adults in the United Kingdom and in the English-speaking world. It was set up in 1989 to promote the teaching of the alphabetic code in a research-based way, and this remains its main aim.

Buffet lunch included in ticket cost -lunchtime will give attendees a chance to meet and talk to others involved in literacy education including RRF committee members Ruth Miskin, Sue Lloyd and Debbie Hepplewhite.

Cost: £75 inclusive of buffet lunch for 'early birds' or £85 if booked after 31st August.

Postal booking:
Contact: Lesley Drake,
74 Leybourne Road,
London. E11 3BT

Please give details of numbers of places required, names of attendees and enclose a cheque
(made out to the Reading Reform Foundation) for payment.

Please state if an invoice is required for reclaiming the cost.
(or if an invoice is required before a cheque can be issued by your school). This can be collected when you register on the morning of the Conference.

Book and Pay Online
Go to: if you wish to book your ticket(s) and pay online via PayPal. Please note, there are NO ADDITIONAL FEES involved in using this method and you do not need a PayPal account to make a payment.


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