OCR Latin pilot

This school year, The Iris Project is launching a first-of-its kind project at Pegasus primary school in Blackbird Leys, Oxford, and St Saviours primary school in Brixton. For the school year 2012/13, these schools will receive Latin as part of the literacy curriculum for their year sixes using a brand new Latin course "Telling Tales in Latin" (due to be published by Souvenir Press in early 2013), which will lead to the pupils sitting the new OCR Entry Level Latin qualification. The pupils will receive Latin once a week for an hour as part of the school curriculum, and will sit the exam in the summer term. They will also complete a coursework assignment. This OCR pilot project is funded by "Classics for All". Latin at Pegasus school has been supported by "The Hamilton Trust" since 2009.

This will be the first time that state primary schools have learned Latin on the literacy time table towards an examination qualification. If successful, the scheme will be rolled out to pupils across the UK who are involved in The Iris Project's Literacy through Latin projects. The Literacy through Latin scheme has been serving state primary schools in London and Oxford's most deprived regions since 2006, offering thousands of pupils the opportunity to learn Latin as part of curriculum lessons. The Iris Project was the first organisation to run a scheme delivering Latin as part of the national literacy curriculum, and to focus especially on schools in deprived urban regions, where literacy levels are often low, and literacy skills may be a particular challenge for pupils. Through our projects we introduce the nuts and bolts of Latin grammar, and demonstrate the deep connections between Latin and English; in this way, we help to unlock the complexity of English and to instil a fascination for learning new languages. The scheme now runs in Swansea, Reading, Fife and Manchester too.

The effects of the Literacy through Latin scheme on KS2 literacy targets have already been recognised in the latest OFSTED report for St Saviours school in Brixton. The report states: “The school has a range of effective partnerships with external agencies, including the Iris Project, which, by teaching Year 5 pupils Latin, has made a strong contribution to those pupils’ improved writing.”

The Iris Project
24 Green Ridges
Headington
Oxford
OX3 8PL

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