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REACH Primary

Students reading in a classroom

Testing the impact of a targeted Teaching Assistant led programme on word recognition, decoding and language comprehension in primary school pupils. 

Researchers Professor Mike Coldwell, Dr Karen Daniels, Dr Martin Culliney, Dr Josephine Booth, Sean Demack

Project Date 2018-2020

REACH Primary is a programme to support struggling readers. It is delivered by trained Teaching Assistants to individually targeted pupils over a period of 20 weeks. The project is being run by a team from the University of Leeds, and evaluated by the Sheffield Institute of Education.

The intention is to recruit 80 primary schools to the trial. Schools must identify ten Y3 pupils that are working below the expected standard in reading, and nominate two Teaching Assistants to deliver the one-to-one support (if randomised into the intervention group). Schools will then be randomly allocated to either receive REACH Primary or to act as a ‘Business as Usual’ control school. 

The evaluation will measure the impact of the REACH Primary programme on reading through a standardised test and secondary measures of decoding and language comprehension. The evaluation will also include an implementation and process evaluation to determine why, how and in what contexts the implementation of the intervention has or has not proven successful.

REACH has been evaluated through a previous EEF efficacy trial with Y7 pupils in 27 secondary schools. The trial yielded very positive outcomes, but the trial was rated as having moderate-to-low security, and is now being evaluated in a larger efficacy trial with Y3 pupils.


Document links 

REACH Fair Processing Notice

REACH Information Sheet

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