English as an Additional Language (EAL)
At our school, English is the language of instruction. English as an Additional Language (EAL) classes are available to students who require support.
We understand that students enter our school at different ages and stages of English language learning and have various educational backgrounds in their home languages.
With better English language skills, new students find it easier to immerse themselves into school life. Without a doubt, this ensures a smoother transition into their new environment academically, socially, and emotionally.
For some, school is the only place they use English. This means that they will need additional time and support, along with informed teaching that explicitly addresses their language needs, and assessments that take into account their developing language proficiency.
Our warm, friendly community supports all new arrivals, particularly students who are learning the English language. At The International School of Western Australia, there’s no better way to learn a new language as students are immersed in English, the curriculum is delivered in English, they make new friends in class, in the playground, in co-curricular and community activities.
While we encourage families to value and maintain their home cultures and languages, we also highly recommend prospective students gain as much English language instruction as possible before arrival.
Parents/guardians will be asked about their child’s level of English during the enrolment process. If parents consider that their child will need English language support, this can be indicated on the enrolment application.
Upon arrival, students will be given time to settle in to school life in Australia before English language proficiency is assessed. In consultation with the classroom or homeroom teachers, those students who may need support will be assessed. This usually occurs approximately one week after their arrival. Assessments focus on the students’ skills and understandings in each of the language modes – listening, speaking, reading and writing in English.
The aim of the EAL programme is to help students become confident and successful in the academic classroom using English as the medium of study. Students remain in the EAL programme until a level of proficiency is reached that enables them to fully participate in all activities at class level. There is no final examination. Students readying to exit the programme will be evaluated in order to inform teaching staff of language proficiency in English.
Students who need EAL support at The International School of Western Australia spend the majority of their time in their regular year level class. However, they also receive specialist instruction in English as an Additional Language classes during the school day. EAL students receive a total of 3.5 hours of instruction per week in small groups, at an extra cost to the parents/guardians.
Families newly arrived at ISWA will be given ideas as to how to support their children learning English while living in Australia.