English as an Additional Language (EAL)
The government’s definition of a pupil with EAL is anyone who has been exposed to a language other than English during early childhood and “continues to be exposed to this language in the home or the community”. EAL learners sometimes have a variety of support issues. EAL learners may be:
- Diverse in background: they may be UK-born, or recently arrived in the UK due to personal and professional choice or desperate circumstances.
- Diverse in English language proficiency: they may be new to English, use English as a main language but not yet at age expected proficiency, or fluent bi/multilingual in English and other language/s.
- Diverse in educational background: they may have experienced interrupted or no schooling, only the UK school system, or consistent schooling via a different curriculum.
- Diverse in their literacy: they may be familiar with the Latin-based alphabet/script, or may be literate in a non-Latin based alphabet/script or not literate at all.
Children may not only need help with language development but may need pastoral support depending on the family circumstances.