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Grammar and punctuation report

Inspectors in England urge students to improve their literacy

School Grammar and punctuation have attacked companies for setting children a poor example by having names that "subvert" and "disregard" standard spelling and punctuation rules.

In its latest report on literacy in secondary schools, Ofsted warns – without identifying any companies – that, by using these names, businesses give the impression that spelling, grammar and punctuation do not matter.

Mike Cladingbowl, Ofsted´s director of schools, told the Guardian it was important that children recognised the difference between formal and informal English.

He added that most high streets had at least one advert or shopfront with an incorrect spelling or an apostrophe in the wrong place.

Ofsted´s literacy report called on secondary schools to urgently improve students´ literacy. A recent report found one in six adults had a standard of literacy below that expected of an 11-year-old.

Researchers at Cambridge Assessment analysed the writing ability of 16-year-olds between 1980 and 2005. They found that while teenagers were 10 times more likely to use non-standard English in written exams than in 1980, they used far more complex sentence structures, a wider vocabulary and a more accurate use of capital letters, spelling and punctuation skills than in the past.

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