Inside our Secondary Case Studies

Pupils from Renfrew High

In 2017-18, we piloted the First Minister’s Reading Challenge with six secondary schools to learn how the challenge could work in a secondary context: what barriers existed to creating a reading culture and how the Reading Challenge could help schools overcome these barriers. At the end of the year we had six very different reading cultures, each suited to the school’s context and priorities but united by a shared excitement around reading for pleasure.

Our pilot schools and others have shared their experience in written case studies which you can download from our resource section once you have registered. Here are some of the key themes you can find in each case study to help you navigate to the sections that are most relevant to your school as you take up the challenge!

Renfrew High School, Renfrewshire

  • Working with associated primary schools
  • Organising a cross-curricular project
  • Building partnerships in the community
  • Encouraging creative writing


Sgoil Lionacleit, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar

  • Getting staff across the school on board
  • Creating physical spaces for reading
  • Bringing reading to the wider community
  • Making time for reading


Arbroath Academy, Angus

  • Using author visits to inspire pupils
  • Planning a calendar of reading events
  • Introducing pupils to Scots
  • Redesigning the library programme


St Andrew’s & St Bride’s High School, South Lanarkshire

  • Giving pupils a leading role
  • Using evidence to advocate for the importance of reading for pleasure
  • Making reading visible across the school
  • Building a reading habit


Clydebank High School, West Dunbartonshire

  • Working with parents during transition
  • Using paired reading to support reluctant readers
  • Introducing wordless picture books and graphic novels
  • Making reading more prominent


Dunfermline High School, Fife

  • Getting staff engaged in the Reading Challenge
  • Setting up book clubs
  • Family reading events
  • Starting conversations about books


We would love to hear how you are approaching the Reading Challenge in your secondary school! Tweet us at @FMReadChallenge to share what you are up to or email if you would be interested in writing a blog or case study for us.

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