The Highcrest Academy

OUR EAL provision

Catering for a variety of learners, the EAL department offers support to students with varying levels of proficiency in the English Language, aiding in accessibility and promoting achievement and independence.

The main aim of the EAL department is to enable EAL pupils to access the national curriculum in all subjects by:

  • Developing the students’ skills in English
  • Helping students to become independent learners
  • Assisting students in gaining knowledge and skills which will enrich their personal and professional lives
  • Helping them to integrate into the new community
  • Building their confidence in the mainstream classroom

Our Students

The Highcrest Academy has many bilingual and multilingual students.

Some of these students have recently arrived in the country while others have been here for several years. The EAL Department looks to ensure that all students are ready to be integrated into the mainstream classroom and are given targeted English intervention where needed. With targeted support and encouragement, we strive towards all EAL students making progress in line with native speakers.

Celebrating Multiculturalism

At The Highcrest Academy, we take pride in our multicultural community and celebrate the variety of spoken languages among our students. With such diversity, we strive to ensure that all students’ cultures feel appreciated, celebrating International Mother Tongue Day, developing strong social groups for our students and encouraging first language use as well as developing their proficiency in English.

Extended Learning & Revision

Homework can be difficult for students learning English.

The EAL Department provides help with homework before and after school. Students are welcome to use the computers in EAL to complete set tasks as well as having the opportunity to get guidance from staff in the department. Before external and internal exams or tests, guided revision sessions are offered. Before school, break time, lunch time, and after school, the EAL department has an open door where students can come for support, both academic and socially.

The EAL Department also provide revision materials such as work and textbooks to support students, as well as writing and exam workshops before and after school. Although these services are provided for EAL students, homework and revision clubs are open to all students so that they can utilise the computers or ask staff for help with their work.   

In-Class Support

The EAL Department also offers support to students in class.

Working alongside subject specialists, we help students to fulfil their potential and improve their grades. Students will be accompanied by a specialist Learning Support Assistant in lessons who will work with students to clarify the teacher's instructions, to translate, and to assist students with their reading and writing. 

Additionally, any students who require additional support will work with the Learning Assistant one-to-one to ensure they are receiving help in any subjects they are struggling in, as well as making sure that they can ask any questions in a comfortable learning environment. 

Morning Reading And Grammar Activities

Students at all levels are encouraged to improve their reading and grammar skills during morning sessions.

These sessions prove to be very effective in improving literacy skills and students’ overall development in English. The sessions are held during one AM Registration each week and last for 20 minutes. Due to the smaller size of classes in these sessions, staff are able to work with smaller groups to ensure students are supported. 

These sessions focus on:

  • Reading tasks with comprehension activities 
  • Spelling 
  • Fiction and non-fiction writing 
  • GCSE Revision 
  • Vocabulary expansion
  • Improving literacy
  • Increasing cultural capital 

Further Clubs/Activities

As well as this intervention, break and lunch times are available for students to gather and be together in a welcoming environment.

Students can also take advantage of other activities such as pool/snooker, table-football or even attend ‘Story time’ on a Friday after school.

It’s not all fun and games; we offer intervention developing students’ use of vocabulary and grammar, as well as spoken and written fluency where appropriate, ensuring all students feel confident and prepared within the mainstream classroom for all subjects. 

The EAL department has also been at the forefront of many celebrations such as International Culture Day and Mother Tongue Day in order to give students the opportunity to celebrate their cultures, and to enjoy or learn about the many cultures our students belong to across the school.