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English as an Additional Language


English as an additional language (EAL) policy and procedures



We are seeing an increasing number of new arrivals with very little English language knowledge. There could be a danger of these children and their families feeling isolated and threatened.


We want all children particularly those learning EAL to feel valued and happy in our school, and to make good progress across the whole curriculum. We will encourage the use of home languages in school because it validates the child’s culture and identity and allows for continued conceptual development across the curriculum as well as increase awareness of language rules. We will strive to ensure that all children have an education tailored to their needs.



At Westmorland primary school we are committed to:


  1. Promoting equality of opportunity for all


  1. Challenge racial discrimination to ensure that unlawful discrimination is eliminated


  2. Promoting good race relations


Through our curriculum, policies and daily routines we will ensure that


  • Specific support for teaching staff is provided so barriers can be removed allowing effective learning to take place

  • Every pupil will have the opportunity to achieve their full potential and have equal access to the whole of our broad and balanced curriculum.

  • Every pupil will be helped to develop a sense of personal and cultural identity.

  • Every child will be receptive of and respectful towards other identities

  • Every child will develop the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to enable them to live happily in a diverse society.

  • Everyone in our school are welcomed and valued.


The coordinators will seek to do this by

  • Ensuring every member of staff is aware of their responsibility to help all children particularly those learning EAL and their families feel valued and welcomed in school.

  • By encouraging the rest of our school community to do the same.

  • Ensuring that there are rigorous monitoring and assessment procedures in place to track progress (Refer to assessment policy)

  • Establishing strong links with parents and carers

  • Providing training for both parents and staff

  • Ensuring that as soon as possible when a new EAL child arrives the class teacher will be informed of their home language and needs

  • Providing the new arrival with a flash card set to allow them to express basic needs, if necessary.

  • Set up dual language dictionaries or phrase sheets in the classroom.

  • Hold a meeting with the child’s family, and a translator if necessary, to find out about the child and their family and to give useful information about school which will be translated in the home language

  • Ensure that all school letters and messages are translated in the home language

  • Refer the child to the Ethnic Diversity Service for assessment if it becomes apparent that the child has very little English language.

  • Ensure all staff know the new child’s name and relevant information about their background and English language stage.

  • Source dual language books relevant to the child.

  • Ensure EDS referrals are made as soon as possible


All staff are expected to

  • Deal with racist incidents that may occur and inform the Deputy Head teacher who will complete a racial incident form within one working day of the incident and pass it onto the authority

  • Know how to recognise and challenge racial and cultural bias stereotyping.

  • Set up and introduce a buddy to look after the new arrival – emphasising the importance of this role at lunch and play times.

  • Learn the correct pronunciation of the child’s name.

  • Be sensitive to any other issues which the co-ordinator makes them aware of.

  • Ensure that as far as possible activities and resources reflecting their background used across the curriculum, as children learn English best in meaningful contexts such as: Key vocabulary displays, Pictures, Real life objects, Speaking and listening strategies (talk partners, drama, games etc.), Writing frames, Simplified instructions and exact repetition

  • Set up dual language displays around the classroom to signify that the new arrival’s first language is welcome and valued.

  • Teach the class something about the pupil’s home country and some simple phrases they can use to talk to their new classmate.


Office staff will:

  • Tell the EAL co-ordinator as soon as they are told a new EAL child is arriving.

  • Communicate important whole school messages with the child’s parents/carers in the way agreed at the initial meeting.


The headteacher will ensure:

  • The policy has been implemented

  • Staff are aware of their responsibilities

  • Staff are given appropriate training and support

  • Ensure appropriate action is taken following any cases of unlawful harassment or discrimination


The governing body will ensure

  • School fulfils its legal responsibilities

  • The policy and related procedures and strategies are implemented

  • That they are kept up to date with the number of racial incidents


Monitoring and Assessment


Whenever possible, children learning EAL will be assessed using the same procedures as the rest of the class. In the foundation stage in particular, normal assessment procedures are suitable to assess children learning EAL.


If an Early stage EAL learner is working with a bilingual assistant the teacher should request that they conduct assessment activities in subjects other than literacy in the child’s first language. This will give the child’s true level in that subject and make it possible to request translated papers in SATs tests later.



In literacy from year 1, EAL learners can be effectively assessed using APP, unless they would be assessed below level 1. In that case, their Literacy levels should be taken from the Ethnic Diversity service booklet “English as an additional language: Guidelines for Primary teachers”. When a child is working with an external teacher from EDS they will provide the class teacher with start and end assessment levels using this guide.



We follow NAA guidelines when considering how and whether to enter EAL children for end of key stage 2 SATs.



Learning EAL is not the same as having special educational needs and EAL learners should not be on IEPs unless for separate needs. If a teacher is not sure if a child has a learning or a language need they can access “Language needs or learning needs?: EAL and SEN.” from the EAL co-ordinator.


Establishing and maintaining strong links with parents and carers.

We know that parents are a child’s first educator and that most parents want to be involved in their child’s education, so we will try to establish and maintain strong links in these ways:

  • The initial meeting (see section 1)

  • Staying in touch through an agreed option: English, first language or dual language letters, or calls in English or translated by an agreed person (friend or EDS translator.) The office staff will pass on important school wide messages in this way, and the class teacher is responsible for passing on any class specific messages.

  • An open door policy so that parents feel they will be welcomed and listened to in school.

  • Letting new parents know about PTA activities.

  • Translators for parent’s evenings if necessary.

  • Using parents as a resource as appropriate e.g. for translating or for getting involved in RE/PSHE talks.

  • Ensuring parents understand why children are being encouraged to use their home language in school.

  • If a parent is concerned about how to support their child at home, one of the Learning Mentors will meet with them and a translator if necessary to explain ways to work together on homework etc.



The co-ordinator will arrange whole-school training as needs are identified, and will inform staff of individual training available. The co-ordinator will undertake monitoring through collecting EAL children’s assessment levels and examples of work and planning. Teachers should request training or support in areas they feel need to be developed. Learning Mentors will help eligible parents’ access free English Language courses and other appropriate courses.



This policy was agreed and adopted by our governing body




Date for review: