Government pledge to share lessons from language and communication programme

27 January 2010

The Government will consider rolling out successful new therapies for improving language and communication skills amongst 11-13 year olds, currently being trialled in schools in two east London boroughs.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Minister for Children, Young People and Families Dawn Primarolo said she would “make sure that all the lessons [from the project] are learned and acted on, and that good practice is shared across the system.”

The therapies are part of the ELCISS project, run by Dr Victoria Joffe from City University, and funded by the Nuffield Foundation. The project explores different aspects of language and communication impairment in secondary school students, and is investigating the effectiveness of two speech and language therapy interventions in improving their language and communication skills.

The two therapies focus on key skills targeted in the National Curriculum – storytelling and vocabulary enrichment.

Early indications are that the project is having a positive impact both on educational attainment and behaviour.

More information is available on the ELCISS website.