Allerton High School, Leeds
West Yorkshire LS17 7AG

T: +44 (0) 113 2034770
F: +44 (0) 113 3930631

Maximising Progress

English, Maths and Science are vital components of everyone’s education. Employers value English and Maths skills and they are required for progression into all A level courses and most Post 16 courses. Below is the presentation from the Core Subjects information evening. 

Maximising Student Progress


Reading at Allerton High School

Allerton High School participates in the Accelerated Reader programme, a reading scheme that aims to improve reading ages by as much as 2 years within a single year.

All of our year 7 students take part along with English sets 3-4 in years 8-10. We have nearly 400 students on the scheme at present. These students are assessed every 6 weeks to check their progress and reading ages are reported home as part of the 0/1/2 cycle each term.

Students not participating in the Accelerated Reader programme are tested each academic year in the November half term and reading ages are reported home in the second 0/1/2 cycle.

What is Accelerated Reader (AR)?

Accelerated Reader (AR) is a computer application that helps us to manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice. Your child chooses a book at his/her own level and reads it at his/her own pace.

When finished, your child takes a short quiz on the computer/iPad. Passing the quiz is an indication that your child has understood what was read. AR gives both children and their teacher feedback based on the quiz results, which the teacher then uses to help your child set targets and direct ongoing reading practice.

How does the programme work?

According to research by AR, children who read for at least 20 minutes a day with a 90% comprehension rate (average percentage correct) on AR quizzes experience the greatest gains. Therefore, your child should be encouraged to read for at least 20 minutes a day. Much of this time will be set aside at school and set for homework but children should aim to read for a short period of time at home each day in addition to this directed time.

How can I track my child’s progression?

If your child is on the Accelerated Reader (AR) programme you will be able to access Renaissance Home Connect. This online system improves the school-to-home connection by allowing you and your child to log in to a website and view each of your child’s reading practice quiz results and progress towards targets. Access to online results can promote discussion between you and your child, which will motivate them and can make reading practice even more effective. In addition, you can specify up to six email addresses to receive automatic updates on your child’s reading progress. Results from assessments to test reading ages will also be sent home as part of the 0/1/2 cycle.

 You can use your child’s log in details to access Home Connect, please contact the school’s literacy coordinator if you are unable to log on (details below).

 If your child is not on the AR programme, your child will sit a reading test during the November half term. You will receive their results in the following 0/1/2 cycle. Please contact the school’s literacy coordinator (details below) if you would like to discuss your child’s reading at any other time of the year.

My child’s reading age seems low, what happens now?

If your child is on the AR programme they will be receiving intensive reading support in school and should be aiming to read for 30 minutes each day. Their reading age should improve quickly if they are following the guidelines set by the programme and their teacher.

 If your child is not on AR you can contact the school’s literacy coordinator for more information. The section below titled How can I help my child become a better reader? may also be useful.

How can I help my child become a better reader?

As with anything, performance improves with practice. Encourage your child to read at home. Create a culture of reading in your household by reading with your child, start collecting books, visit your local library or bookshop on a regular basis, let your child see you reading and discuss books that each of you have read. When reading with your child, stop and ask questions to make sure that your child comprehends what is being read. Reading with your child, no matter what the child’s age, is an important part of developing a good reader, building a lifelong love of reading and learning. See below for questions that you can use whilst reading with your child.

What books should my child be reading?

Accelerated Reader students have a specific book level that they should read based on their reading test results. On completion of the book they will sit a quiz. If they score 100% on the quiz it shows us that they have fully understood that text level and they will then move up a book level. Books can be found at school using the school’s book finding system, Search Star, or you can use the dedicated Accelerated Reader site

Students not on AR can select appropriate books with the help of the school’s librarian or by using the school’s book finding system, Search Star. There is also a Recommended Reads link on our homepage where you can search by your child's National Curriculum reading level.

Questions to ask whilst reading could include:

Recalling information

  • Where/when does the story take place?
  • What does he/she/it look like?
  • Who were the key characters in the book?
  • Where in the book would you find...?

Comprehending information

  • Why did the character do that?
  • How do you think the character is feeling?
  • What just happened and do you think it will affect the storyline?
  • What happened in that chapter/or story?
  • What does that word mean? e.g. proud 
  • Which part of the story gives you information about...? e.g. the setting
  • From whose point of view is the story told?
  • Which words/phrases tell you that ...? e.g. that it is set in winter

For more information please contact the school’s literacy coordinator Sarah Chapman on 0113 2704770 or

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