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Peter Grant MP is supporting Voice Box, an annual national joke-telling competition designed by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists to build schoolchildren’s communication skills. This year’s competition is being run in partnership with the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) and supported by The Communication Trust TCT).

Almost 10% of children start school with some form of language disorder. Undetected or unmet speech, language and communication problems can lead to low levels of literacy, poor educational attainment, poorer mental health and wellbeing and, in turn, difficulties finding employment.

Commenting, Peter Grant MP said:

“The ability to communicate is a crucial life skill and one that can help children achieve their full potential. Voice Box is a unique and fun way of supporting kids to develop those skills and build their confidence with their speech.

“I have written to all of the primary and secondary schools in my constituency inviting them to take part in this year’s Voice Box competition, and I hope that many of them do. The grand final will be held in Westminster next year and I’d be delighted to be able to attend to support a school pupil from Glenrothes and Central Fife.”

RCSLT CEO, Kamini Gadhok MBE, says:

“The aim of the Voice Box competition is to remind people that all children need support to build their communication skills and confidence and some need additional specialist help to speak and understand what is being said to them.

“Communication is a fundamental skill and has the most profound and positive impact on our lives – from our social and emotional development to our behaviour, learning and educational attainment. It impacts on how we interact with other people, how we understand them and, in turn, how we are understood.”

Mainstream and specialist schools across Scotland, England and Wales are invited to bring laughter into their classrooms this autumn by taking part in the competition. Schools should hold their joke-telling contests between October and November and then submit their pupil’s funniest joke to the RCSLT by 1 December for a chance to go through to a grand final at Westminster, London, in 2018.

The pupil with the ultimate winning joke will receive an iPad mini, while two runners-up will each receive national book tokens work £50.

The RCSLT has developed a toolkit with useful resources, ideas and a nomination form for schools to download via

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