Holy Trinity Church of England

Primary School

Growing Tomorrow's Leaders

The Phonics Screening Check

As part of the statutory requirements every Year 1 child in England will be checked by their teacher to make sure they do not fall behind in their phonic learning. This year the requirement to participate in the Phonics Screening Check has been removed due to the impact of COVID. However, we will be using a past screening check to assess the children's progress internally in order to adapt our teaching to meet the children's needs next year. The Phonics Screening Check will take place in term 6. You will be informed of your child’s results in the school report at the end of the year.


The Year 1 Phonics Screening Check is a short, light-touch assessment to confirm whether individual pupils have learnt phonic decoding to an appropriate standard. Parents who are anxious – and there are many – should see it not as a test that can be passed or failed, but as a process which will identify children who need extra help in Year 2. The focus of the test is decoding phonics (sounding out words).


It will identify the children who need extra help so they are given support by their school to improve their reading skills. They will then be able to retake the check so that schools can track pupils until they are able to decode.


The Year 1 Phonics Screening Check will be carried out on a one-to-one basis and should take between four and nine minutes. A trained adult familiar to the children will carry out the screening check. The phonics screening check contains 40 words divided into two sections of 20 words. Both sections contain a mixture of real words and alien/pseudo words. We have attached some practice resources for you to help your child prepare at home. If you have any questions or would like to know how further to support your child please don’t hesitate to ask a member of the team.