A SCHOOL in Erskine is making headlines after being rewarded for building a “culture of reading.”

Pupils and staff at Barsail Primary were delighted to receive accreditation in the Reading Schools programme.

It is the first school in Renfrewshire to do so, after demonstrating its commitment to promoting the joys of reading.

Emma Mavers, headteacher at Barsail Primary, told The Gazette: “We received accreditation from the Scottish Book Trust and are now officially a ‘Reading School.’

The Gazette: Barsail Primary pupils Leia and Jessica just love to readBarsail Primary pupils Leia and Jessica just love to read

“This reflects the ethos and culture in Barsail as we strive to develop a love of reading.

“Getting children hooked on books has had a positive impact on attainment in reading.”

The school set up a group of pupils known as ‘literacy leaders’ who worked with teachers to apply for the accreditation.

Mrs Mavers added: “The journey has provided pupil leadership opportunities and the children are delighted that we have been successful.”

Staff at Barsail Primary have been working hard to promote reading, such as organising family learning events over Microsoft Teams, which included Mrs Mavers reading a bedtime story to youngsters in the evenings during Book Week Scotland last year.

The Gazette: Little bookworm ElliottLittle bookworm Elliott

Other activities included a revamp of the school library, pupils wearing lanyards which encourage people to ask them what they are reading and children giving ‘book blessings’ during assembly, with youngsters handed the opportunity to recommend books to each other.

Primary seven teacher Alison Baird, who is the school’s literacy champion, along with fellow teacher Meghan Baird, said: “We are delighted to receive this Reading for Schools Award, as it very much reflects the hard work that both pupils and staff have put in to building and sustaining a reading culture.

“I am so proud of the pupils in the literacy group who took on this responsibility.

“They all worked extremely hard and developed many skills throughout the accreditation process, not to mention all the fun we had along the way.”

Across Renfrewshire, a total of 36 schools are working towards receiving accreditation for the Reading Schools programme.