Oracy Association: call for expressions of interest

In April 2021 the Oracy All-Party Parliamentary Group published the final report of its Speak for Change Inquiry. Amongst its findings, it recommended the establishment of an Oracy Association to support the teaching and learning of oracy in schools. As the national oracy education charity, Voice 21 fully supports this recommendation. We will be investing time and resources to establish an Oracy Association ready to launch in autumn 2022.

Why is an Oracy Association needed now?

Over the last few years, there has been a growing recognition of the importance of oracy across the education sector. Job advertisements for oracy leads are now commonplace; the two most recent Schools Ministers have spoken publicly about the importance of schools teaching oracy skills; the EEF’s Teaching and Learning Toolkit highlights the strength of evidence for oral language interventions on students’ attainment.

Yet too often, oracy is both everywhere and nowhere in a school, accepted in principle as important but – without deliberate and explicit instruction – falling through the gaps in practice. If we are to realise our ambition of a school system in which a high-quality oracy education is every teacher’s responsibility and every child’s entitlement, we must ensure oracy is given the status it deserves.

We believe a subject association for oracy will help to achieve this by raising the status and recognition of oracy teaching across the sector. This complements our work as a charity: we focus on providing whole-school support to ensure schools embed oracy across the curriculum and school life, so that all students benefit from a high-quality oracy education. An Oracy Association will work in tandem to this, bringing together expert oracy practitioners to develop and deepen knowledge of oracy across the sector. It will be a forum for individuals working in education who are passionate about oracy to collaborate, develop their expertise and inspire others. 

What are the next steps?

We are now launching an open call for expressions of interest in being involved with the Oracy Association. This will be open until Friday 9th September. We will then organise a workshop in September for interested individuals to discuss what the Oracy Association could look like. From this, we will establish a steering committee of individuals who are willing to invest their time and efforts in the setting up and overseeing the Oracy Association, and provide them with the tools and resources needed to do so. A high-level outline of this will be launched publicly in October.

How can I get involved?

We’re looking for individuals who:

  • have some knowledge and experience of oracy in an educational context
  • are willing to invest some time and effort working with us to establish an Oracy Association in the autumn

If that sounds like you, please click the button below to fill in your details and express your interest in being part of the Oracy Association. We’ll contact you by early September with more details about the next steps.

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