Miss. R. Moult – English Intervention Teacher / EAL co-ordinator
Blenheim High School is a larger than average secondary school, with 1370 students on roll. There are more than twenty-five languages spoken at Blenheim High School and eight per cent of our students speak English as an additional language. There are also recent migration trends from Eastern Europe, Asia and South America which have increased the proportion of students who arrive with a very limited knowledge of English.
All pupils need to feel safe, accepted and valued in order to learn. For students who are learning English as an additional language, this includes recognising and valuing their home language and background. As a school, we are aware that bilingualism is a strength and that EAL pupils have a valuable contribution to make. We take a whole school approach, including ethos, curriculum, and education against racism and promoting language awareness.
The EAL provision in school supports, implicitly, the principles of Inclusion and Bilingualism where all students from a wide range of social, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, have the right to access the curriculum and participate in all aspects of school life. This is fundamental in ensuring all EAL students make the same good progress as others. All languages and cultures are valued equally.
EAL Support is provided in the following way:
EAL students are given an initial assessment of their level of English fluency which then informs the type of support they would be given.
In Class Support
Identified students are supported in their mainstream classes with the subject teacher. This necessary support addresses the Basic Cognitive Academic Language needs of EAL students.
EAL English Literacy Sessions
KS3 and KS4 EAL students at various stages of language acquisition receive language enrichment lessons once a week where grammar and language are explicitly taught. At KS4, the EAL teacher ensures that students are given additional support in keeping with the English curriculum to strengthen students'’ skills with regards to GCSE assessments.
Exam Preparation and Special Arrangements
Curriculum areas are supported with writing and differentiating papers. Also, in public exams, students may be allowed extra time, and have access to a bilingual dictionary.
Students are given the opportunity and are encouraged to sit an MFL GCSE examination in their home language by the end of year 10.
Monitoring and Evaluation of EAL Student Progress
In order to ensure that progress is being made, targeted EAL students are regularly assessed and targets are set in accordance with the English National Curriculum Levels. Students’ progress is monitored by the EAL teacher.