A FIRM which helps children read has rolled out its services across the country.
Middlesbrough-based Sound Training for Reading developed a literacy improvement programme which helps children as far afield as London, Bristol and the Isle of Wight.
The firm was developed by Katy Parkinson, who previously worked for over 10 years at Middlesbrough Council as the senior coordinator of the authority’s Learning and Language Team. She set up her own company last year to take the ideas she developed to a wider audience.
Mike Williams, business manager at Sound Training for Reading, said: “Literacy is a burning issue at the moment, both politically and educationally, and it is central to the agenda of improving children’s education.
“If children struggle with literacy, it can hold them back not just in English but in subjects right across the curriculum so that is what we try to address with our programme.
“Ofsted has recently been critical about the standards of literacy in schools and is introducing a requirement for literacy skills to be taught across the curriculum, which is exactly what Sound Training for Reading does.”
“We originally thought we would be able to start in the North East and expand organically, but we are already delivering the programme right across the country.”
The firm was helped to protect its intellectual property by specialists at Newcastle-based law firm Ward Hadaway. Alex Shiel, partner and head of IP, said: “Katy and the team at Sound Training for Reading have come up with a fantastic programme which has achieved outstanding results and promises to be of real benefit to pupils and teachers across the country.
“In setting up the company, it was important to agree with Middlesbrough Council on which elements of the work Katy has carried out for the authority could be transferred over to the new company and how this would be arranged.”