Monthly Archives: November 2019

***How to find the one-stop route to Debbie’s work and Phonics International Ltd’s resources, guidance, training and further information linked to the reading debate:

Over the many years that my husband David and I have provided resources, information, guidance and training, David has constructed various websites – and then, poor man, he has to keep re-constructing them because of advances in technology – phew – hard work!

We realised that we needed one website to lead to our other websites so we have used the domain for this purpose.

Go to the ‘HUB’ page in particular for all our associated sites including our free and commercial resources: 

If you scroll down the page (link above) you will also find direct links to the UK Reading Reform Foundation where at one stage I was the newsletter editor (Feb 2001 – Spring Term 2004) – see the archived RRF hard copy newsletters – this is what being a ‘pioneer’ for research-informed reading instruction looks like:

Then in 2015, a founding committee (including me) established the International Foundation for Effective Reading Instruction which has a very informative ‘Forum’ that is well worth visiting:

I also really want to acknowledge in particular the fantastic work of my long-standing friends and fellow-pioneers in the UK, Anne Glennie and Susan Godsland. They provide outstanding sites and dependable, very much-appreciated personal support:

About Anne Glennie:

Read about Anne’s petition and pioneering in Scotland for evidence-informed teacher-training – supported by Sir Jim Rose himself and many other internationally renowned educationalists and researchers!

About Susan Godsland:

Visit Susan Godsland’s acclaimed site packed full of information and references linked to the reading debate and how best to teach reading.

***2018 – The emphasis in England on early language, literacy and literature continues with the establishment of 34 ‘English Hubs’, an ‘English Hubs Council’ and the ‘English Hubs Training Centre’ involving the official promotion and funding of high quality Systematic Synthetic Phonics programmes and training

Anyone who knows me appreciates that I consider myself to be first and foremost a ‘practitioner’, that is a very, very practical person!

It was years of being a teacher, tutor, mother, special needs teacher, headteacher, teacher-trainer, phonics consultant, educational columnist, newsletter editor and pioneer for research-informed reading instruction that led to me writing the Phonics International programme in 2007 (my husband David’s suggestion) – in a genuine attempt to be supportive by providing the nuts and bolts for effective teaching and learning.

And it is this self-imposed need of mine to be practical and supportive that has led to me re-visiting the Naked Emperor blog as a conduit to provide practical suggestions based on my knowledge, observations and experiences – past and present.

As of this year, 2019, I am an associate of the ‘English Hubs Training Centre’ run by Ruth Miskin Training. This Department for Education’s initiative has led to a renewed interest in phonics training in England including in my work and approach to phonics provision – which I shall share via this blog.

See here for information about the English Hubs initiative:

05/06/2019 | By Ruth Miskin Training

English Hubs Training Centre

We are delighted to announce that, after a competitive tender process, Ruth Miskin Training has been appointed to run the new English Hubs Training Centre.

We will work in association with ICANNational Literacy Trust, John Walker from Sounds Write, Sue Lloyd from Jolly Phonics, Marlynne Grant from Sounds Discovery and Debbie Hepplewhite from Phonics International and Floppy Phonics.

The English Hubs programme is made up of 34 schools with a strong track record in teaching children to read, as well as promoting a love of reading. The Training Centre will train and support 180 teachers, appointed by the hubs, to become literacy specialists. These literacy specialists will go on to support teachers working in some of the most disadvantaged areas in the UK. They will support local schools with excellent teaching in phonics, early reading, early language development and building a culture of reading in Reception and Key Stage 1.

The English Hubs Council, including leading phonics experts, reading experts and headteachers, will oversee the English Hubs and Training Centre.

For more information contact, or call on 020 7043 2394.