Kip McGrath Education Companies


A sustainable and scalable solution to overcome illiteracy and innumeracy in underprivileged communities

In many underprivileged countries English is the language of employment, of business and of post-school studies, but is commonly not the language spoken at home. The cost of private tuition is often far beyond the grasp of most parents from these communities. Kip McGrath has been working with South African communities for almost 20 years and recently launched the Kip McGrath Enrichment Centres.

Kip McGrath Enrichment Centres

In partnership with school principals and their governing bodies, Kip McGrath is currently the specialist remediation partner in eight South African schools in two very different poor and underprivileged townships in the Gauteng Province around Johannesburg.

Kip McGrath Enrichment Centres were developed to:

  • Help high-risk students in schools learn to read and to find their place in society
  • Provide remediation training for teachers to use our proven teaching tools and methods so they can continue to work independently within schools
  • Offer a simple and affordable solution with nationwide scalability made possible via online delivery or by establishing an enrichment centre in your school

Social upliftment

As part of the Enrichment Centre programmes, families can contribute to their local community through a range of social bartering projects. Kip McGrath Enrichment Centres located within these schools source materials via corporate and school sponsorships and donations.

Parents show their commitment by donating hours to work on projects such as tending vegetable gardens on school premises for feeding schemes and destitute local families or tree planting in the immediate community to reverse decimated areas that had been stripped for fuel before electricity was supplied.

The creation of aftercare homework facilities to prevent young children being at home alone until their parents return from work. Children can also donate their time to work in the School Uniform Charity Shop.

One in six people in the UK are below the literacy level expected of an eleven-year-old

Functional reading levels = employment

A functionally literate reader is able to read well enough to operate in society, encompassing the level of literacy that enables a person to be trained in technical or trade courses. This level is generally considered to be that which is achieved by an average student in Grade 4 at school. Put another way, a functional reading age is equivalent to the level of reading competency expected of a child aged 9.5 years of age.

Scunthorpe---corpMainpromoSmiling06[1][1]Functional illiteracy is a huge problem in all societies. To achieve this, minimal reading age is critical for a person to adequately function in society, to find employment and manage their day-to-day living needs. This can be illustrated by US reports that two-thirds of all students who do not achieve a minimal reading age, are more likely to be supported by society and governments, rather than contributing. Research has shown that those who do not reach functional reading age are more likely to become long-term unemployed or become part of the prison system.

The goal of all reading instruction for poor readers must include the achievement of a functional reading level.

Early intervention is the key

This graph illustrates the reading trajectory a child can experience without remedial literacy intervention.

Without intervention, the literacy gap widens as the child grows older. The likelihood of ever reaching a functional reading age without remediation is unlikely.

Intervention is the key. Simply put, a functional reading age of 9.5 years is what is required to function and manage life on a daily basis. This is the minimal level of literacy a person would require to operate a bank account, fill out a form, apply for a job, read workplace signs and instructions, use technology, operate a computer or read a bus timetable. The burden of illiteracy impacts upon communities in so many ways.

Kip McGrath’s experience has shown that a non-reader can reach a competent reading level in just 100 lessons.

Improving literacy and numeracy in 14 Commonwealth countries

Kip McGrath’s intention is to help children around the world to overcome their literacy and numeracy struggles and believes that every child can learn to read, they just need to be taught properly.

Our mission

Our mission is really quite simple. We believe every child has the right to learn to read and write.

Overcoming illiteracy and innumeracy can change the world. With almost 1/6th of humanity illiterate, it is a global problem. Improving literacy and numeracy levels will have an enormous and positive impact on communities and countries alike. Not only will the lives of the illiterate be enriched by knowledge and achievement, improving literacy and numeracy will also enable them to function and contribute to society. An increase in literacy and numeracy levels will have long-term positive effects on economies by reducing unemployment levels, increasing tax contributions, reducing health problems and lessening antisocial and criminal behaviour.

Our methods

Why do our methods work? This question is best expressed as ‘why does Kip McGrath succeed where others have failed?’ There is nothing mystical or magical about our methodology. It is simple really.

We pre-test each student to find out what is known as well as what isn’t known. This allows us to develop an individual programme for each student that builds on each student’s strengths as well as targeting their weaknesses.

We use resources that are delivered in a step-by-step approach designed specifically to accelerate progress. It’s the small progressive steps that get big results. We’re even able to get a non-reader to a functional reading level in just 100 lessons.

All of our teachers are trained in our methods and are accountable.

We check students’ work programmes to ensure that teachers are teaching every child correctly.

Technology and delivery

Effective remediation demands that teachers acquire the skills necessary to help students overcome their struggles with literacy and numeracy.

Access to this specialist training for teachers and for students in remote or underprivileged areas is both simple and cost effective.

Kip McGrath’s training methods deliver the skills directly to teachers or deliver lessons to students, whilst maintaining crucial live teacher-pupil interaction, real-time feedback and manual work that underpin effective learning.