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Consultation letter re changes to Admission Policy

Busy parents – help your children with maths try this link: Maths at Home

Y1 Phonic Check Information

All children in Year 1 will take the phonics screening check at the beginning of June.

What is the Year 1 phonics screening check?

All children in Year 1 in England will take the phonics screening check individually. It is designed to give teachers and parents information on how your child is progressing in phonics. It will help to identify whether your child needs additional support at this stage so that they do not fall behind in this vital early reading skill.

 What does it comprise of?

There are two sections in this 40-word check and it will assess phonics skills and knowledge learned through Reception and Year 1. Your child will read up to four words per page for their teacher and they will probably do the check in one sitting of about 5-10 minutes.

 What sort of check is it and is it compulsory?

It is a school-based check to make sure that your child receives any additional support promptly, should they need it. It is not a stressful situation, as the teacher will be well equipped to listen and understand your child’s level of skills.

There will be a few practice words first to make sure your child understands the activity.

 What will it check?

It will check that your child can:

  • Sound out and blend graphemes in order to read simple words.
  • Read phonically decodable one-syllable and two-syllable words, e.g. cat, sand, windmill.
  • Read a selection of nonsense words that are referred to as ‘pseudo words’.

 What are nonsense or pseudo words and why are they included?

These are words that are phonically decodable but are not actual words with an associated meaning e.g. geck, blan, quemp. Pseudo words are included in the check specifically to assess whether your child can decode a word using phonics skills and not their memory.

The pseudo words will be shown to your child with a picture of a monster and they will be asked to tell their teacher what sort of monster it is by reading the word. This not only makes the check a bit more fun, but provides the children with a context for the nonsense word which is independent from any existing vocabulary they may have. Crucially, it does not provide any clues, so your child just has to be able to decode it. Children generally find nonsense amusing so they will probably enjoy reading these words.

 Is there a pass mark?

The check is not about passing or failing but checking appropriate progress is being made. If children do not reach the required standard, then the teacher will be in touch to discuss plans and offer additional, tailored support to ensure that your child can catch up. Children progress at different speeds so not reaching the threshold score does not necessarily mean there is a serious problem. Your child will re-sit the check the following summer term.

 What happens to the results?

We will inform you of your child’s results as part of their report at the end of the summer term. We also report them to the Local Authority but the results won’t be published in a league table as with SATs. 

 Do all schools and children have to participate?

All schools and academies in England must take part in the phonics screening check unless they are an independent school. There is a process in place for reviewing children with special educational needs, so if your child’s teacher thinks there are very special reasons related to your child and their needs that make them think the phonics screening check may not be appropriate, they will decide on appropriate action and discuss this with you. 

 What can I do to help my child?

Check with your child’s teacher if there are any particular areas that you should focus on at home so that you are working together to support your child.

You will find free resources to support phonics here.

 What should I do if my child is struggling to decode a word?

  • Say each sound in the word from left to right. (How to pronounce phonemes here)
  • Blend the sounds by pointing to each letter, i.e. /b/ in bat, or letter group, i.e. /igh/ in sigh, as you say the sound, then run your finger under the whole word as you say it.
  • Work at your child’s pace.
  • Always be positive and give lots of praise and encouragement.

 Additional Information:

Statutory testing happens in Year 2 and Year 6.  The National testing for Key Stage 1 Teacher Assessments takes place  in the first half of the summer term and for Key Stage 2 during mid May.

 The School Run

 Reading Rockets

You can support your child with their maths by visiting Maths at Home by London Grid for Learning, where you will find a series of short videos about maths learning for Key Stage 1 and 2.

 Online eSafety issues?  Visit    

You will find an explanation of Trent’s Home Learning Policy here.  (1.6MB)

 Trent School’s Social Media Policy.   (1.3MB)

If as a parent of this school, you would like a paper copy of any of our policies (at no cost) please contact the school office.

PTA Information:

Click on ‘Parent View’ for the Parents Survey 2016 (in the grey area below).

You can now check out our new page on Facebook: TRENT PTA.

The Parent Teachers’ Association Survey May 2015   (1.9MB)


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