New project encourages pupils to read for pleasure

High-profile authors of books for young people will visit secondary schools in North Lanarkshire to encourage reading for pleasure as part of a new literacy initiative

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All first year pupils will be given a talk given by an author about what inspired them to become a writer, what books they loved and where they get their ideas for their stories from.

The 'Read to Succeed' programme is taking place across all 25 secondary schools throughout September.

Each pupil will then have the opportunity to receive a signed version of one of the author's books at the end of the event.

A launch of the programme took place at Coatbridge High School attended by award-winning author Theresa Breslin and S1 pupils from all secondary schools across North Lanarkshire. All pupils attending received a free, signed book by the author as part of the Attainment Challenge.

During the launch event senior school literacy champions read poignant extracts from Ms Breslin's book Remembrance; and Coatbridge High School's rock and pop choir and band also entertained the audience with their performances.

Theresa Breslin said: "I was thrilled to be asked to launch North Lanarkshire Council's Read to Succeed Project. There was a wonderfully uplifting atmosphere in the School Hall and it was a joy to meet students and staff so keen to get involved and take forward this exciting project.

"Providing a wide variety of books and every single S1 pupil given the opportunity to engage with an author, this project is truly special. Such reach and depth will create and sustain readers, improving aspirations and attainment."

Isabelle Boyd, Assistant Chief Executive for Education Youth & Communities, added: "This is a fantastic programme which highlights our attainment challenge drive to close the attainment gap between more and less advantaged pupils."

The authors making school visits are: Jonathan Meres, Theresa Breslin, Lari Don, Alan Gibbons, Alex Scarrow, Alison Galbraith, Philip Caveney (a.k.a. Danny Weston), Oisin McGann & Bali Rai.

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