Commission on Fake News and the Teaching of Critical Literacy Skills in Schools

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Children and young people today are growing up in a globalised world and are processing information from a wider variety of sources than ever before. They need the critical literacy skills to navigate the potential pitfalls when consuming news, particularly when using online sources and social media.

The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Literacy launched the Commission on Fake News and the Teaching of Critical Literacy Skills in Schools on 13 September 2017. This follows the publication of a new report from the National Literacy Trust, Fake news and critical literacy evidence review, which stresses that children and young people in England do not have the critical literacy skills they need to identify fake news.

To inform the commission, the National Literacy Trust launched three surveys for primary and secondary school pupils, to find out what children know about fake news and to measure their ability to spot fake news. We also launched a survey for teachers to gather information on where critical literacy skills are taught, what support teachers would need to improve the teaching of these skills and thoughts on the impact of fake news in the classroom.

The surveys have now closed and we will publishing the results in 2018.

The commission will gather evidence from children and young people, education professionals, policy makers and the media before making a series of recommendations for government and the education sector, as well as advice for parents, in summer 2018.

The Commission on Fake News and the Teaching of Critical Literacy Skills in Schools has been launched by the APPG on Literacy in partnership with the National Literacy Trust, Facebook, First News and The Day.

Get involved

You can access free teaching resources to use with your pupils. This includes a resource that takes you through the correct answers to the test questions in the pupil surveys and a booklet with ideas of how to embed critical literacy within your classroom. Further resources will be added in 2018.

Create a free login to access the resources.

Further details

If you have any questions about the commission, please email harriet.mccann@literacytrust.org.uk.