9 Feb 2009

Literacy programme hailed as success

6:25 pm on 9 February 2009

A New Zealand programme to improve literacy levels among Maori and Pacific Island children is being hailed as a significant international breakthough.

Waatea News reports the Woolf Fisher Research Centre developed and tested the programme in almost 50 decile one schools in South Auckland and the West Coast.

Centre director Stuart McNaughton says the children were two years behind the national average in reading when the programme started three years ago, but now they have caught up.

He says the centre assesses children's progress and then fine-tunes the teaching method used at the schools.

Dr McNaughton says the research is also further evidence further evidence that schools can do better with Maori children - which he describes as "hugely significant."