English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Students with EAL are those students for whom English is not their first language. Students with EAL learn English by being in the classroom and interacting with their teachers and peers.
General strategies to support students with EAL
The school has an EAL policy (a full copy of the policy is on the website under Our School/Policy Notes) in which it is recognised that teachers can take various actions to support EAL students including:
- ensuring that vocabulary work covers the technical as well as the everyday meaning of key words e.g. homophones, metaphors and idioms
- explaining how speaking and writing in English are structured for different purposes across a range of subjects
- providing a range of reading materials that highlight the different ways in which English is used
- ensuring that there are effective opportunities for talking, and that talking is used to support writing
- encouraging students to transfer their knowledge, skills and understanding of one language to another
- building on students’ experiences of language at home and in the wider community, so that their developing uses of English and other languages support one another. This could be by using written translations to support vocabulary building and understanding when this is appropriate.
- providing writing frames as scaffolding towards more independent learning
- sharing key subject specific vocabulary
- an EAL Pupil Passport may be created to outline ways teachers can support key students in the classroom by the EAL team
- an electronic dictionary may be given to support key students identified by the EAL team
Admission, Mid-Phase Admission and Induction of EAL Students
The admission of EAL students follows the school’s admission procedure with the addition of:
- An additional interview to collect further information about the student and family background
- An initial assessment of students for those arriving from abroad or for those students transferring from another UK school where there is no recent information to assess the level of their English language skills.
- Induction support by our EAL team which is adapted according to the individual needs of the students
- The organisation of buddies from the tutor group to offer support
Sixth Form Mentor
Some students will be given a Sixth Form Mentor who will help them with learning English. Their mentor may be able to speak the same language as them and act as a buddy, should they need more support.
KS3 and KS4: Specific Interventions
EAL students are identified by the EAL team for additional and specific support after school. At KS4, interventions involve recapping GCSE material.
At the beginning of the year the EAL team assess the writing of all students with EAL. The school tracks students with EAL each term to monitor and feedback their progress, identifying any particular areas of weakness, in order to assess future actions needed.