Release type: Media Release


Launch of National Literacy and Numeracy Week 2009


The Hon Julia Gillard MP
Minister for Education. Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
Minister for Social Inclusion
Deputy Prime Minister

The Minister for Education, Julia Gillard, today officially launched National Literacy and Numeracy Week 2009 at Wiley Park Public School in Sydney with the NSW Education Minister, Verity Firth and the Member for Watson, Tony Burke.

National Literacy and Numeracy Week (NLNW) will run from 31 August to 6 September and aims to raise community awareness of the importance of developing effective literacy and numeracy skills.

Schools across Australia will participate in a range of activities and recognise the achievements of local students and teachers, parents and members of the community who support young people to develop literacy and numeracy skills.

The theme for NLNW 2009 isGetting the Basics Right, reflecting the fact that literacy and numeracy skills are the key that unlocks the door to a successful education and the best start in life.

As part of the Education Revolution, the Rudd Government has committed more than half a billion dollars to improving literacy and numeracy in schools.

Literacy and numeracy pilot projects are already underway in around 400 government, Catholic and Independent schools across the nation. The trials will help us find the best ways of helping students who may be struggling with the basics.

Together with the new National Curriculum currently under development, the Education Revolution is driving a renewed focus on the foundation skills of literacy and numeracy.

John Flanagan, best selling Australian author is the 2009 National Literacy Ambassador, and Simon Pampena, stand-up maths comedian, is the 2009 National Numeracy Ambassador.

These two inspiring personalities will encourage and support young minds to discover, explore and make meaning of texts and collect and analyse mathematical data in a fun and meaningful way.

Schools are encouraged to be involved in three nation-wide activities:

  • Reach for the Stars– a numeracy activity for all ages, developed by the Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers
  • National Reading Day–a range of age-appropriate literacy activities jointly developed by the Australian Literacy Educators Association and the Australian Association for the Teaching of English
  • Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awardsceremony managed by the Dorothea Mackellar Memorial Society.

A wide array of innovative and exciting teaching ideas, resources and class materials is available to support schools to participate in NLNW.

To access these resources and to find out more about activities in each State and Territory during National Literacy and Numeracy Week in 2009 please visit the National Literacy and Numeracy Weekwebsite.