EAL Policy


Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School

EAL Policy


The purpose of this policy is to outline the school’s approach to identification and meeting the needs of pupils who are classified as having English as an additional language. It applies to all children in the school, including those in EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage).



In defining EAL (English as an Additional Language) we use the following definition -

‘An EAL pupil is a pupil whose first language is not English. This encompasses pupils who are fully bilingual and those at different stages of learning English.’

EAL pupils may be newly arrived from a foreign country and school; newly arrived from a foreign country but an English speaking school; born aboard, but moved to the UK at some point before starting school or born in the UK but in  a family where the main language is not English. EAL pupils will need varying levels of provision.

Whenever an EAL child arrives at Sacred Heart, Leigh they will have an induction and be given a buddy to support them in their first week at the school.



Our school seeks to ensure that all pupils are enabled to have access to a broad and balanced and relevant curriculum. English is best learnt through the curriculum and EAL pupils should be encouraged to play a full part in all learning opportunities. EAL learners make the best progress within a whole school context, where pupils are educated with their peers. Our school environment promotes language development through the rich use of language. The school structure, pastoral care and overall ethos help EAL pupils integrate into the school whilst valuing diversity. Bilingualism is viewed a positive and life enriching asset. Parents and prospective parents will be provided with the particulars of our EAL provision.


Identification and Assessment

Identification and assessment is carried out with the purpose of providing the most appropriate provision for each pupil. In assessing the nature and extent of the pupil’s graspof English the following methods may be used –

• Information from the child’s application form
• Information from the induction meeting with the parent/carer
• Information from assessment papers by the school/EMAS team
• Information from the child’s previous school

Whenever possible assessment is undertaken as a partnership between the class teacher our EAL Coordinator, Mrs K. Pasquill, the parent/carer and the child. During theassessment of EAL pupils competence in English is categorised on a 5 point scale


New to English

Level 1

The pupil may –

• Use their first language for learning and other purposes
• Remain competently silent in the classroom
• Be copying/ repeating some words or phrases
• Understand some everyday expressions in English but may have minimal or no literacy in English

Needs a considerable amount of EAL support


Early Acquisition

Level 2

The pupil may –

• Follow day-to-day social communication in English and participate in learning activities with support
• Begin to use spoken English for social purposes
• Understand simple instructions and can follow narrative accounts with visual support
• Have developed some skills in reading and writing
• Have become familiar with some subject specific vocabulary

Still needs a significant amount of EAL support to access the curriculum


Developing Competence

Level 3

The pupil may-

• Participate in learning activities with increasing independence
• Be able to express their self orally in English, but structural inaccuracies are still apparent
• Be able to follow abstract concepts and more complex written English
• Literacy will require ongoing support, particularly for understanding text and writing

Requires ongoing EAL support to access the curriculum fully



Level 4

• Oral English is developing well, enabling successful engagement in activities and across the curriculum
• Can read and understand a wide variety of texts
• Written English may lack complexity and contain occasional evidence of errors in structure
• Needs support to access subtle nuances of meaning, to refine English usage and to develop abstract vocabulary

Needs some/occasional EAL support to access complex curriculum materials and tasks



Level 5

• Can operate across the curriculum to a level of competence equivalent to a pupil who uses English as a first language

   Operates without EAL support across the curriculum



Provision for learning is best expressed in terms of ‘learning support’ – an umbrella term indicating the provision of a variety of types and levels of need, including SEND, EAL and higher achieving pupils. This provision encompasses curriculum planning, support for individual pupils or groups of pupils within the classroom in terms of differentiation support for those responsible for teaching these pupils and supplementary provision. EAL pupil will be provided with opportunities to make good progress. Classroom teachers have a responsibility for ensuring that pupils can participate in lessons and will have awareness of good practice in providing for EAL pupils within the classroom setting. Our school aims to assess the needs of EAL pupils within the classroom setting. However there may be times when it is appropriate for children to be withdrawn from lessons to receive focussed support – parents will be kept informed of all support given by the school and EMAS Team.


Monitoring and recording

It is the responsibility of the class teacher (with the support of the EAL Coordinator) to maintain up to date records of EAL pupils in their class whilst they are in their care. The EAL Coordinator collates the information regarding EAL pupils and ensures a baseline is produced for each child using the NASSEA steps. A register of EAL pupils is maintained centrally by the school and monitored by the EAL Coordinator. Class teachers update the records each term.


SEND and Differentiation

EAL pupils are not children with SEND and our school recognises that most EAL children needing support with their English do not have SEND needs but have skills and knowledge about language similar to monolingual English speaking children. Their ability to participate in the full curriculum may be in advance of their communicative skills in English. Some EAL pupils may have SEND and in such cases pupils will have equal access to our school SEND provision, in addition to EAL support. EAL pupils with a Special Educational Need or Disability will be identified as part of normal assessment procedures as outlined in our SEND Policy.



Parents/carers and teachers will work together in the best interests of pupils with EAL. Teachers will meet with parents on a termly basis to inform them of progress made and discuss strategies to support the children.