Nottinghamshire County Council backs plans for national reading competition

Nottinghamshire County Council has backed plans for a new national reading competition for children.

Starting in autumn, the government will be running a reading competition for seven to 12-year-olds in England, which aims to boost literacy standards and inspire youngsters to read.

It is understood the competition will be based around who can read the most books, with youngsters encouraged to read fiction in particular.

Details will be announced in the coming weeks, but there are expected to be local, regional and national prizes.

The county council already promotes the value of reading by taking part in the Summer Reading Challenge, with 760,000 children aged four to 12 taking part nationally last year.

Their task is to read six or more library books of their choice during the holidays with collectable incentives and rewards, plus a certificate and medal for every child who completes the Challenge.

In total across Nottinghamshire, 8,950 children took part in the challenge and 49 per cent of those completed the challenge to read at least six books over the summer.

Coun John Cottee, Cabinet Member for Culture and Community, at Nottinghamshire County Council said: “Encouraging children to read at any age is always a good thing and research shows that children who read more perform better in tests and at school.

“While we await more details on the initiative it sounds like a good idea which is to be welcomed.

“We already support the Summer Reading Challenge each year in Nottinghamshire which is also a wonderful idea to get children into the libraries and also appeals to families as it is a worthwhile pursuit over the summer period and absolutely free.”