Choosing books in Roman Catholic Primary School, Segbweme

Inspiring Readers Sierra Leone phase one report

24th July 2019 | Publications

Between April 2018 and January 2019, we worked in partnership with the Sierra Leone Library Board (SLLB) to launch the first phase of our Inspiring Readers programme in schools in Sierra Leone.

Five SLLB libraries and 25 schools took part and in January 2019 the first phase of the programme came to an end. This report presents the key outcomes and findings from this first phase.

About Inspiring Readers

Inspiring Readers aims to increase opportunities for primary school children to read by bringing brand new books into the classrooms of under resourced schools.

Each participating school receives over 1,000 brand new books, including locally published titles and a cupboard to store them in. School staff also participate in training in library management and bringing books to life in the classroom. In addition, each school is linked to its local library which already has a Children’s Corner. The libraries act as hubs, providing teachers with additional support, extra books and the expertise of a professional librarian.

So far, the programme has launched in Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Uganda, Zanzibar and Zimbabwe. We hope to reach 250,000 primary school children across Africa through the programme by 2020. You learn more about Inspiring Readers here.

Key findings

94% of pupils are now borrowing books from school to read at home, compared to only 49% before the project began.

Teachers report a 61% increase in pupils’ ability to read at the level expected by the curriculum.

Not only are pupils’ literacy skills improving as a result of increased access to books but teachers also report an increase in confidence among pupils in participation in lessons and interest in learning.

Phase one of Inspiring Readers Sierra Leone is generously supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. We would like to thank them for their ongoing support.

Read the report here

Click below to view the full Inspiring Readers report


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