Showcases and Workshops

2020 - 2021

Firstly can we say an absolutely massive thank you from us and well done for keeping everything juggling.  It has been very tough for everyone and you have risen to the challenge and provided that much needed support for all the children and families.


More showcase dates to be confirmed for 2021 – 2022.

Some schools will be able to apply for funding of a maximum of £160 per school if they meet certain criteria which is accessed through the self referral data (this cannot be claimed if the school has previously claimed showcase money in previous years).


These are free to access by Headteachers, senior leaders, trust leaders, teachers, teaching assistants and other support staff.

All the workshops are run on Google Meet and as they are 11.30am – 1.00pm you are welcome to have a working lunch whilst attending them. The workshops are led by Hub Lead Danni Cooke unless otherwise stated.

Workshop 1 – Friday 8th January – Phonics Leadership
Workshop 2 – Thursday 28th January – Reading for Pleasure: Building readers for life (professor Teresa Cremin)
Workshop 3 – Friday 29th January – Closing the Vocabulary Gap and Young Children’s Language Development – PART TWO
Workshop 4 – Friday 5th February – Love of Reading, Storytelling and the Importance of Sharing Stories
Workshop 5 – Thursday 11th February – Reading in KS2: Pleasure, purpose and progress( James Clements)
Workshop 6 – Friday 26th February – Phonics Subject Knowledge
Workshop 7 – Friday 12th March – Phonics Recovery: How to continually support children after lockdown
Workshop 8 – Friday 26th March – The lowest 20%
Workshop 9 – Wednesday 28th April 5 – 6pm – Reading for Pleasure (Michael Rosen)
Workshop 10 – Friday 30th April 11.30m – 1.00pm – The lowest 20%

Workshop 11 – Friday 7th May 11.30am – 1.00pm – The importance of decodable books, How to match your books and then What next?
Run on Zoom.  Run by Hub Lead Danni Cooke.

Workshop 12 – Thursday 13th May 3.30 – 5.00pm – Deep Dive into Reading webinar and Q&A (Gill Jones)
Run on Zoom.

Workshop 13 – Wednesday 23rd June 5.00 – 6.00pm – Focus in Poetry in the Classroom (Michael Rosen)
This event is free to access and suitable for all schools staff using the Google Forms booking form.  Please add all names and emails of everyone who is accessing the event, even if you are using one login, so that we have some indication of numbers attending.  A Zoom link will be sent nearer the time to everyone who has booked. Please can you login to the event 5 minutes before, and no earlier than 15 minutes before.

Poetry in the classroom and a short Q&A at the end. This is about how to make poetry pleasurable, fun, exciting, generating enthusiastic reading, performing and writing of poetry. Bring along your favourite poetry books.

How to book:

If you would like a space on any of the above workshops or showcases then please email : with the name, role and email address of the person wishing to take part. If you are unsure who wants to take part but wish to reserve a space then still please email. Spaces might have to be capped at two per school if they get too busy. If you have trainee teachers in your school they are more than welcome to attend as well.

Please email your 2020 Autumn Year 2 Phonic Screening Check Data % pass rate when you have it so we can update our records to see how we might be able to support you further with tailored support and access to funding.

In order to access this support we request that you please fill in this year’s self referral with your latest data and predictions for 2020 as this will help us see whether we can offer you further tailored support, school audits and access to free funding.

We are currently supporting a number of schools with Partner School Support which includes literacy specialist support days working alongside the school.  Please get in touch for further information.

Sharing a Love of Reading

Ilsham English Hub are running some free training in conjunction with the Exeter Diocese on developing reading with the support of the local community.  This training is free and is a great opportunity to train members of your local community on this reading initiative.

This reading initiative aims to get members of the community to volunteer to come into the school and share stories with children to continually develop a love of reading whilst also providing vital key links to the local community.

There are two training dates available (the content is the same on both dates, volunteers can attend one or both if they want, the second will however be a repeat of the first session):

  • Thursday 20th May 2021
  • Thursday 24th June 2021

Both sessions will be run on Zoom and are 10-11.30am.

This is free to access and open to both Church and non-church schools as many of the churches work closely with community schools.

You can book this online: or contact Tina Wilkes, Diocesan Education Adviser for more information or 07940 482934

You can also email if you have any questions or queries about this.

Many people have seen the recent communication from the DfE explaining the process of validation for SSPs which will begin in June 2021. This is an exciting opportunity for new SSPs to be validated and will widen the choice of approved phonics programmes for schools.

The communication also explained that, contrary to previous communication, the DfE will not be updating Letters and Sounds. This means that the current Letters and Sounds framework will not be on the validated list of SSP as it does not meet the criteria in relation to resources etc.

There has also been a lot of misinformation on social media with conflicting messages around this issue which has caused concern for many people. I would encourage you to reach out to us if you have any queries to ensure that you get the correct information and the full picture.

There are options if you are currently working from the Letters and Sounds framework to get fidelity to it as an SSP through one of the Letters and Sounds SSP programmes that will be validated, this includes the work with Little Sutton on Letters and Sounds revised that is going for June validation ( There is also a transition time for schools and over the next year as always we will provide support with this and all other SSP programmes.

Underneath all the approved programmes are the fundamentals of phonics and the key hub aims of getting every child reading as we know reading changes lives.

We are in regular contact with the DfE and also the different approved programmes and it is our continual aim to ensure whatever phonics programme you teach that it is of the highest quality to enable children to make rapid progress in reading and that one programme is taught with fidelity. We work with the National English Hubs Challenge checklist that matches the Ofsted Framework.

We will also work with schools to provide support with the new early reading framework that is due to be released later this year. This will be an important and comprehensive non-statutory guidance document to support the foundations of reading.We are going to look to run a workshop after half term where you will be able to investigate how this might affect you and what steps you might consider taking next. For the meanwhile though please do not panic and If you have any questions or queries relating to this please contact me.

As always if you have any other questions or queries or want to arrange a meeting to discuss things in more depth then please do not hesitate to contact us.