Students with EAL have the right to a safe and stimulating learning environment in which their languages and cultures are valued. They are entitled to the same educational opportunities as their monolingual peers with access to a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum.
EAL learners have distinct and different needs affected by, amongst other things, their previous experience of schooling and literacy in their first language, the age at which they enter the UK educational system and their home and communities’ expectations of education, language and learning. Some students have suffered emotional and psychological trauma as a result of loss and displacement in their countries of origin.
Students’ general knowledge and language knowledge must be considered when placing them in teaching groups. EAL learners make the best progress within a whole school context, where pupils are educated with their peers.
Bilingualism is viewed as a positive and life-enriching asset that will support the student when moving into Post 16 opportunities.
The school structure, pastoral care and overall ethos help EAL students integrate into the school whilst valuing diversity.
Although learners may acquire fluency in conversational English quite quickly, it can take much longer to acquire the level of proficiency in academic English which is required to succeed within the school curriculum.
As a school, we recognise that EAL learners and their families make a valuable contribution to both the school and the community.
English is best learnt through the curriculum and students should be encouraged to play as full a part as possible in classroom activities from the beginning. Resources and support should be made available where necessary for EAL students to access the curriculum.
Learning an additional language may present challenges to the curriculum but this does not signify that the student has a special education need. Students with English as an additional language may also have a special educational need and these need to be assessed accordingly.
If there are any questions regarding EAL at Heworth Grange, please contact Ms J Tait.