Phonics Screening Check



  1. The phonics screening check is a new statutory assessment for all children in Year 1.
  2. It will take place week starting 11th June 2018.
  3. It comprises of a list of 40 words (20 real and 20 nonsense).
  4. Expectations from the Government is that pupils should achieve up to 32 out of 40 to reach the expected level.
  5. The check will take up to ten minutes per pupil and will be conducted by the Headteacher in his office with the help of other staff.
  6. Children who do not achieve the expected level at the end of Year 1 must be considered for a retake in Year 2.
  7. St Thomas More was part of the Government’s pilot phonics check in 2011.  We reported our findings back to the DFE and were one of the highest performing schools on achieving 60% whilst the majority of the other schools reached 32%. In 2012 80% of our children reached the expected level compared to a national average of 57%. In 2013 87% of our children achieved the expected level compared with the National level of 69%. In 2014 93% of our children reached the expected level compared with the National level of 74%. In 2015 95% of our children achieved the Government's expectation of 32 plus score. 
  8. Support has already been put in place to assist all our pupils to achieve their best outcomes.
  9. St Thomas More will report the result of your child’s score out of 40 along with the % of children who have reached the expected level.  This must be reported to you by the end of the summer term hopefully by the second week in July.
  10. A sample of the types of words that the children will have to read is provided (Groups C-J). Children will be expected to reach Group H in order to achieve the Screening Check standard. Please click here to see lists.


  • Let your child see you read and read to them
  • Tell your child about interesting things that you have read in newspapers, magazines and books.
  • Visit the local library.
  • Visit bookshops.
  • Sit with your child every night and engage with them in their reading. Please make comments in their reading record book to assist the teachers.
  • Discuss with them about what they have read in the book.
  • Ask them to retell the story.
  • Talk about interesting words and identify words or interesting phrases that they might use in their writing.
  • Occasionally ask them to write the sequence of the story and identify characters.

National Results

The following table compares the percentages by phonics result for the school in 2015 with the national results for 2014.

    Wa Wt A D
All Pupils National 74 24 0 2
School 95 5 0 0
Boys National 70 27 0 2
School 95 5 0 0
Girls National 78 21 0 1
School 96 4 0 0

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