Literacy Guarantee policy launched by State Liberals

State Liberal Leader Steven Marshall will today launch the Literacy Guarantee – a key education policy aimed at giving every South Australian child a strong foundation in literacy.

Students with dyslexia and other learning difficulties will be a central focus of this comprehensive plan to improve literacy and numeracy outcomes for all students.

“We want our schools to be the best in Australia and for our students to access the best education system in Australia. With a strong foundation in literacy, everything else follows,” said State Liberal Leader Steven Marshall.

“The Weatherill Labor Government has presided over an underperforming South Australian education system, with NAPLAN results ranking lowest or second lowest in 18 out of the 20 categories measured – it’s not good enough.”

“To improve our education system overall, we must put literacy first for all our students – we need a Literacy Guarantee.”

The $9 million Literacy Guarantee will include:

  • Literary coaches with expertise in evidence based practice, such as phonics, and teaching students with dyslexia and other learning difficulties 
  • Phonics checks for all Year One students
  • Free dyslexia workshops for parents across the state 
  • Literacy Guarantee conferences - professional development opportunities for teachers 
  • Parental engagement resources for schools and families 
  • Working with ACARA to develop meaningful proficiency standards for NAPLAN testing 
  • Requiring all new teaching graduates to pass literacy and numeracy tests (which are now required of new teaching students) to gain employment in South Australian government schools 
  • Working with NGOs delivering evidence based literacy and numeracy programs targeted at disadvantaged children in their early years before they get to school 
  • Reviewing how SACE exams are conducted for students with learning difficulties 
  • Support for school breakfast programs being extended across South Australia.

“Even the most conservative estimates show that more than one in 10 students struggle with dyslexia and other learning difficulties. These students, who have persistent difficulty with reading and spelling, will benefit greatly from our Literacy Guarantee,” said Mr Marshall.

“Literacy and numeracy skills are the foundation for success in learning and in life – we must be able to guarantee those skills for our children.”