Eyre Peninsula schools improve phonics

Nearly three quarters of Eyre Peninsula schools have recorded positive results for year 1 students from this year's Phonic Screening Check, part of positive results seen statewide.

The Department for Education reported an overall improvement across the state from this year's test, showing 52 per cent of year 1 students scored at or above the expected achievement level by correctly decoding 28 words out of 40, up from 43 per cent the previous year.

Education director Tammy Williams said the positive results were also seen on the Eyre Peninsula and the department recognised the importance of getting phonics instruction right so children have the foundational skill to learn to read.

"Overall for the Eyre Peninsula we have seen 71 per cent of our schools improve the outcomes for children when it comes to phonics, evidenced in the phonics screening check for year 1s," she said.

"Even more pleasing is that 76 per cent of our schools have seen an increase in their average accuracy score for students.

"This means that children have improved their ability to decode unfamiliar words."

The department reported improvements across all student groups, including Aboriginal students, students with a verified disability, students who speak English as a second language and regional students.

Ms Williams educators were becoming more informed about the best practices in teaching children to read.

"The Department for Education`s 10 year aspirational goal of becoming a world class system requires us to look into the best way to teach children to read," she said.

"A key lever for achieving this goal is ensuring we have precise improvement plans that target literacy."

This is the second year of the department's Phonic Screening Check for year 1 students.

Education minister John Gardner said the improvements on last year's results show schools were working hard to lift literacy outcomes through high-quality teaching practices.

"The improvement in this year's results is a reflection of our schools' commitment to lifting literacy outcomes, and we are equipping them with the right support and materials to use best practice in their teaching of literacy and reading," he said.

"The signs are very encouraging, with improvement seen across all student groups, but we know there is still much more work to be done to keep improving literacy outcomes for students."