Intervention details

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Read-Write Inc. Fresh Start

Moderate for Secondary reading
Not evaluated for Primary reading
UK Evaluated in the UK

Intervention description

Read-Write Inc. Fresh Start is a phonics intervention for struggling readers in Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3. It is part of the Read-Write Inc. series of literacy programmes for primary and secondary age children. Fresh Start is a catch up intervention for those children that are still learning to read at the end of primary and the start of secondary. The intervention starts with the systematic teaching of phonics and moves on to improving reading fluency and comprehension.

Schools are encouraged to run sessions for parents, these teach parents the sounds that children will be learning and shows them how to use the books that children take home.

Resources are published by Oxford University Press.

Professional development/training

The intervention involves a combination of teacher modelling, partner teaching and discussion. Training and in-school support are available from Ruth Miskin Training. Schools receive two whole-school training days, with the training covering the principles and teaching techniques required to teach the intervention. Schools also received between three to six developmental days per year, depending on their starting point for teaching reading within the school.

Evidence Summary

The Education Endowment Foundation recently ran a project investigating the effectiveness of Fresh Start, which found that the intervention shows considerable promise as an effective catch-up intervention for low-attaining readers at the transition phase from primary to secondary school. The study found a mean effect size of +0.24 in secondary reading.

Moderate for Secondary reading
No. of studies 1
No. of students 419
Average effect size +0.24

Key research

The Education Endowment Foundation evaluation found that continuous feedback to teachers and support from trainers assists successful implementation of the intervention.

The Education Endowment Foundation is now running a further project to investigate the effectiveness of Fresh Start and Read-Write Inc Phonics. The evaluation should be available in summer 2019

Key stages

  • Key Stage 2
  • Key Stage 3

Targeted groups

  • Struggling readers


Around £116 per pupil

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