Free membership for schools to support children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.

Our free audiobook service is here to support children with a range of disabilities that make reading print difficult. In addition to offering these children free access to our extensive collection of audiobooks, we also offer a free school account so that teachers can see the resources on offer and choose the most appropriate ways of using them to support their students.

Who we help?

If you have children in your school with any of the conditions below, they may benefit from a free Calibre membership:

  • Dyslexia

  • Autism or Aspergers


  • Visual impairment

  • Long COVID

  • Other physical and neurological conditions

A formal 'diagnosis' is not required as we appreciate that this can form an additional barrier.

Key benefits of opening up the world of reading to children through audiobooks:

  • Support with general knowledge and education – we have a large collection of non-fiction and curriculum set texts to support learning

  • Encourage regular reading for pleasure – children can choose from the latest bestsellers to spark a love of stories and improved empathy and cognitive development. There is evidence that 16 year olds who read for pleasure are more likely to secure managerial and professional jobs in later life. *

  • Inclusivity – break down barriers and allow children to keep up with their peers

  • Improve language and comprehension - through access to a wider range of vocabulary *

  • Reduce risk of developing mental health problems later in life, including depression, anxiety, behavioural problems, anger and aggression *

  • Enhance wellbeing – regular readers for pleasure report fewer feelings of stress and depression and feelings of relaxation from reading are stronger than watching television or taking part in technology intensive activities *

* Research compiled by The Reading Agency.

How the service works:

  • Free and unlimited access to thousands of audiobook titles

  • Listen anywhere via download or streaming on phone, tablet or computer or borrow USB memory sticks using our free postal service

  • New titles added every week

  • Newsletters highlighting new books and reading suggestions (opt-in required)

How we work with schools

We are keen to work with schools to support as many students as possible who are eligible for our service. In particular, we encourage schools to promote general audiobook use:

General audiobook use - key points:

With a main focus on reading for pleasure, we offer support to schools to promote audiobook use to all students who are struggling with reading.

Through a digital resource pack (currently under development), we'll provide leaflet and poster designs and templates containing all the information required to promote audiobooks to students and parents.

We'll also send regular news and updates to a lead teacher for onward sharing to keep engagement levels high.

Research has shown that guided reading using an audiobook and a printed book together is the most effective at improving reading and comprehension levels, but research also shows that simply listening to the audiobooks is also beneficial.

If recommended reading lists for different year groups or key stages are available, these can be passed to Calibre Audio and we will try to source as many as possible if we don't already have them in our collection.

Contact us to explore other ways of working together. This might include:

Extra-curricular school book groups - introducing a structured guided reading group to support students with print disabilities to improve their reading and comprehension.

Formal educational support as part of provision for special educational needs

If a school would like to discuss either of these alternatives or suggest other approaches to supporting their students, we encourage them to email us on:

How do I create a school account?

We are currently reviewing the way that school accounts are set up, so if you would like one, please get in touch with Membership Services using the details below. If you have individual students who would like to use the service, we recommend that they sign up for an individual account which is free and will enable them to continue their membership when they move on from your school. The individual joining form can be found here.

For further advice and information on schools membership, please call us on 01296 432339 or email us on