Reading Support Project

(Oct 2016 - Sept 2020)

This four-year project funded by the United States Agency for International Development in Southern Africa (USAID/SA) was launched on 1 November 2016 and focuses on improving language literacy skills at foundation phase level in South Africa’s Limpopo and North West provinces. This system-strengthening project is being implemented in partnership with a number of leading literacy organisations: the Molteno Language Institute (MOLTENO), the South African Institute for Distance Education (SAIDE), Oxford University Press of South Africa (OXFORD SA) and an international partner, Voluntary Services Oversees (VSO). The ultimate aim of this project is to improve Foundation Phase learners’ reading skills in African Home Languages (AHLs) as well as in English as a First Additional Language (EFAL). The first phase of implementation entailed a pilot study in North West’s Ruth Mompati District. This pilot was concluded in June 2018 and the handover to the district was on 16 August 2018. Concurrent with the implementation of the pilot, ongoing collaboration efforts were undertaken with the Department of Basic Education with a view to finding better alignment with their strategic goals particularly in the two districts that were earmarked for scaling up. Since DBE was also involved in a study aimed at improving reading (Early Grade Reading Study - EGRS), the synergy between the two projects became obvious and this led to the revision of the RSP to take to scale the benefits of coaching as demonstrated in the EGRS. The Revised RSP is designed around the following focus areas:

  1. The professional development of curriculum advisors
  2. The development of the leadership capacity of principals/deputies and HODs to promote a culture of reading in their schools
  3. Quarterly ‘just in time’ training for teachers on the implementations of Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS) and lesson plans
  4. The provision of 14 literacy coaches to 140 schools to offer classroom - based support to Foundation Phase teachers
  5. The provision of Learning and teaching Support Materials (LTSM) packages to schools
  6. Through the DBE, Classroom Libraries will be provided to 100 project schools
project schools
Principals and Department Heads
FP teachers to be trained on Setswana and EFAL lesson plans and LTSM
learners assisted through LTSM