WITHAM MP Priti Patel has launched her annual school literacy campaign ‘Get Witham Reading 2023’. 

The campaign, which was first held in 2012, began at a time when children’s literacy levels in Witham were below the national average.

Get Witham Reading Day this year takes place on Friday, July 7, and Minister of State for Schools Nick Gibb has accepted Ms Patel’s invitation to the launch event which will take place at Templars Academy. 

This year, the main theme will be a celebration of King Charles III’s coronation, with the schools taking part basing their reading activities around it.

In previous years, schools involved have decorated classrooms and corridors in themes related to Get Witham Reading and even built major scale models linked to their chosen reading.

Every school and library in the Witham constituency has been sent a personal letter from Ms Patel, inviting them to take part in Get Witham Reading 2023.

Braintree and Witham Times: GET INVOLVED: Priti Patel visiting schools as part of Get Witham Reading 2022 to meet the students who were taking partGET INVOLVED: Priti Patel visiting schools as part of Get Witham Reading 2022 to meet the students who were taking part (Image: N/A)

Ms Patel said: “It is wonderful to welcome the Minister to our launch event, where he will have the opportunity to see the great work schools in Witham are doing to help pupils to develop their reading skills and an appreciation of the written word. 

“Reading is such an important activity to encourage, both as a pastime as well as in education where it is the key to real learning and expanding the knowledge of children.

“It has been a real pleasure to work with schools across my constituency through Get Witham Reading over the last 12 years and to see for myself the wonderful work they do to promote and enrich reading and literacy skills in children and young people.”

Templars Academy CEO Ceri Jones said: “I am delighted Templars Academy will be hosting the launch event of the annual Get Witham Reading initiative and I look forward to welcoming Mr Gibb to the event to meet our brilliant students and staff.

“Get Witham Reading is a fantastic initiative and it highlights the importance of raising literacy skills for students, along with instilling a love of reading in them, at this early age.

“We are excited to take part in this special day and look forward to the students joining in these activities."