The Archbishop Lanfranc Academy has a high proportion of pupils from homes where English is an additional language (EAL). These EAL pupils come from a wide range of backgrounds, and contribute to the cultural heritage and diversity that greatly enriches the Lanfranc community. Their experiences inform and inspire teaching and learning across the whole school. Many of the EAL learners in the school are fluent English users and do not require additional support. However, a significant number each year are not only at an early stage of their English language development but also learning how to thrive in a new culture.
Our aim is to provide a tiered support to ensure that all EAL learners have the same opportunity as their monolingual peers to flourish at the school, both socially and academically.
All EAL pupils are interviewed and assessed in order to determine appropriate intervention and support strategies. Pupils also receive a Welcome Pack and are introduced to one of our Language Ambassadors, whose role it is to become a peer-mentor for EAL pupils and help them settle into the school. We ensure that EAL pupils have a bi-lingual dictionary and pupils are encouraged to use it to support their learning in lessons.
Language develops best when used in purposeful contexts across the curriculum and strategies to assist EAL learners in mainstream lessons are embedded into the Academy’s teaching and learning practices. Consequently, for EAL pupils whose language competency is already developing, an immersive approach is considered the most beneficial. However, for those pupils who are at the earlier stages of acquisition, we offer a variety of more additional support
At Key Stage 4, pupils are given EAL lessons as one of their options whereas Key Stage 3 learners are offered timetabled support in place of mainstream lessons. The Academy has also invested in membership to Flash Academy, a digital online platform that allows access to a number of pupils to enhance their English learning after school, either in homework club or at home.
The EAL curriculum follows a four-level course, which gives pupils the tools they need for successful and enjoyable language learning. The Eyes Open series introduces and explores language through compelling, interest-grabbing topics that appeal to young teens, sparking their interest and curiosity, and providing multiple opportunities for meaningful language production while building inter-cultural awareness. Its content has also been created with both the Common European Framework (CEFR) and Key Competences in mind. EAL pupils’ progress is assessed after each unit of work to monitor their progress.
Pupils in Key Stage 4 are the given the opportunity to work towards an English qualification that they can take with them on their journey after they leave. The Functional Skills English programme enables students to develop confidence and fluency in, and a positive attitude towards, English. Pupils can be entered at 5 levels with the top levels giving them the foundation to either apply their skills effectively in the workplace or take them onto studying for GCSE and beyond.
The EAL department also manages the Community Language provision and pupils are encouraged to participate in the GCSE Community language programme, which supports them in preparing for GCSE exams in their community language. The department currently offers GCSEs in Portuguese, Polish, Arabic, Urdu, Italian and Persian.