Reading to unite dads and pupils

Reading: Purlwell pupils with headteacher Safeena Nazam
Reading: Purlwell pupils with headteacher Safeena Nazam

FRED will be a new name heard a lot around a Batley school this year.

The name means ‘Fathers Read Every Day’ and is at the heart of Purlwell Infant and Nursery School’s drive to improve reading and build a love of books in families.

FRED is a four-week project where dads are asked to read with their children for ten minutes a day in the first two weeks, and then 20 minutes a day for the following fortnight.

Families that take part for the four weeks will be entered into a raffle to win a new set of books.

Headteacher Safeena Nazam said: “We are trying it out with reception children initially, and hope to grow from there if FRED is a success.

“It is also really important that dads take part too.

“Research carried out by the Fatherhood Institute shows that children who grow up with warm, nurturing, and actively involved fathers do better in school, have higher self-esteem, build better relationships with other children, behave better and grow into happier, more successful adults.”

Safeena has been headteacher since September, and took over leadership of the school 
after a good Ofsted report at the end of summer.

She added: “It is vital that we set high expectations and encourage every child to reach their full potential.

“Due to my personal circumstances I did miss some of my secondary education as a result of living abroad for a few years and didn’t think I had the chance to get back into education and undertake a professional career.

“I was given a second chance to gain an education and it is very important to me that every child succeeds and reaches their full potential the first time round, as it is not always possible to get another chance like I did.”