A SPECIALIST team is helping to ignite a passion for read among children who struggle with the written word.

South Shields School is rolling out a literacy support programme for for Year 7 to 9 children with special educational needs and disabilities.

Around 100 students are gaining greater confidence thanks to highly specialised literacy sessions, with no more than six children in a group.

The literacy programme targets students during advisory time so they don’t miss conventional lessons.

The team assesses accurately students’ abilities then reviews progress on a monthly basis helping them to develop a love of reading through books and on-line literature.

South Shields School assistant head teacher for achievement Janey Stubbs said: “This is a really exciting initiative because it is igniting self belief and a passion for reading among children who previously found it the most challenging.

“Reading opens up so many incredible opportunities right across children’s education with long-lasting effects into adulthood. Reading well and enjoying literature helps people build their self-confidence and their self-esteem.”