Although EAL (English as an Additional Language) is not a National Curriculum subject, we provide a lot of opportunities for our new arrivals to access mainstream lessons. Our various interventions are, in the first instance, designed to develop functional language and then expand subject related vocabulary to help with transitions to lessons.
We take into consideration that every pupil is different, thus, for some, it may take a little bit longer to adjust. We also make sure that transition is as smooth as possible and that our new additions do not feel that they underachieve.
On the first day of induction, pupils are assessed and awarded a grade A-E (A describing a pupil who is ‘New to English’ and E describing a pupil who is ‘Fluent’) on their English language skills. Additional EAL booster sessions are offered for those pupils who enter the school with an insufficient level of English, whether oral, written, listening or reading skills.
In addition, extra English lessons are taught by a specialist EAL teacher who withdraws pupils from the mainstream classes twice or three times a week subject to the needs of the individual. These pupils are grouped according to ability with a maximum of three other students for the best teacher-pupil ratio.
With new arrivals and more advanced learners, we follow Project 1-5 pupil books, workbooks and the website: www.elt.oup.com/student/project3rdedition, to ensure consistency in delivering EAL. Tasks are challenging for every pupil so that they move from one level to another steadily. Pupils are fully aware of the progress they are making in EAL and what needs to be done to achieve it. They also have an opportunity to develop grammatically in four areas of learning: listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Additionally, we run a Young Interpreters Scheme for those pupils who are fully bilingual. These pupils receive badges and certificates upon completing the training and are involved in interpreting and translating activities around the Academy, attending certain parent meetings/evenings and help non-English speaking pupils to feel welcome and included.
Language is central to our identity. Therefore, we recognise and value the home languages of all pupils. Furthermore, our school offers a great opportunity for KS4 pupils to have an additional GCSE qualification in their home language. We are very proud of our 2018 Year 11 cohort, most of whom did brilliantly well and achieved As and A* in Polish, Portuguese, Urdu, German and Italian language GCSEs.
Although many pupils acquire the ability to communicate on a day to day basis in English quite quickly, the level of language needed for academic study is much deeper and more detailed, and we provide that support through a distinct additional curriculum that ensures rapid progression through time.
|Head of Faculty||Ms J O'Sullivan|
Mrs A Baranauskiene