Learn about oracy

Learn about Voice 21 Oracy Schools

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Our story so far

In 2015, Voice 21 set out on a mission to empower all children and young people to use their voice for success in school and in life. We knew that spoken language skills were one of the strongest predictors of a child’s future life chances yet too many children were not being given the opportunities to explicitly and purposefully develop these crucial skills, opportunities consistently afforded to an advantaged few.

Building on the pioneering practice of School 21, we had an ambitious goal to grow from a programme within a single school into a national movement of schools and teachers committed to providing a high-quality oracy education to all.

Become a Voice 21 Oracy School

 Becoming a Voice 21 Oracy School is a commitment: to transform oracy teaching and learning across your school, enabling all students to access and benefit from a high-quality oracy education.

Through establishing a whole-school commitment to oracy, teachers and school leaders are empowered, passionate and motivated to ensure that the voice of all students is valued in school and beyond.

We are proud to work with over 600 schools across our national network all committed to delivering a high-quality oracy education for their students.

The case for oracy

While schools devote hundreds of hours of teaching time and expertise to the development of pupils’ writing and reading skills, barely any time is spent developing the vital verbal communication skills students need to succeed in work and life.  

On entry to school, disadvantaged children’s spoken language development is significantly lower than their more advantaged peers and these gaps grow throughout school widening to a five years’ difference by the age of 14.

Evidence shows that a high-quality education can: Improve academic outcomes, improve literacy development, increase confidence and wellbeing, equip students to thrive in life beyond school and shrink the language gap.

© 2022 Voice 21. Voice 21 is a registered charity in England and Wales. Charity number 1152672 | Company no. 08165798