Bishop Aldhelm's CE

Primary School

Loved by God; United in Learning

English as an additional language (EAL)

One of the more significant changes to the school population in recent years has been the increase in the number of children with English as an Additional Language (EAL). EAL children now form a majority in one in nine schools in England; the number has risen by 20% during the last five years. At Bishop Aldhelm’s we celebrate having 23 different language spoken at our school. 

Fluency in one language often helps in learning another, so we encourage parents/carers to continue using the home language out of school. The following leaflet, from EMTAS, gives information about how to support your child at home with your home language.

Bring Up Your Child Bilingually

Our teachers rewrite schemes of work to accommodate low levels of English, while keeping the content and level of challenge the same. There is a focus on visual delivery of vocabulary, and extensive use of graphs and pictures, although attention is also paid to grammar.

We want to celebrate the different languages that are now a part of our school family. Below are different links to factsheets about some of the countries that our children come from and we ask that you share these with your own child/children to help them understand the challenges that lay ahead of their friends.

We are also developing our website to welcome EAL families to Bishop Aldhelm’s. You will see that we now have a Google Translate option at the top left of our Homepage. If you have a particular interest in learning more or would like to support our development in this aspect of our provision please do not hesitate to contact Miss Sharpe via the school office.

Young Interpreters

This scheme, run by Ms Piwowarska, involves training some of our bilingual children from KS1 and KS2, whose mother tongue is different to English. These children gain the title of a Young Interpreter. Their role involves welcoming and assisting new arrivals, for whom English is a second language. Our Young Interpreters: spend time with the new arrivals, help them with learning the English language and aspects of school work and spend time with them at playtime, ensuring that they are happy. If your child is interested in becoming a Young Interpreter then please ask them to see Ms Piwowarska.

Learning Support Helpers

We have a support group, made up of parents, called Language Support Helpers (LSH).

This group is designed to assist parents with EAL (English as an Additional Language) who might struggle to communicate or understand English or may need help with school matters.

Parents have offered to help other parents with English using their own mother tongues: Italian, Ugandan, Portuguese and Russian.

If you are interested in becoming a LSH, please contact Miss Piwowarska via the school office.

Equally, if you feel that you would benefit from receiving help from one of the LSHs then please contact the school office.


Global Learners

We are proud to have links with schools in France and China. All children at Bishop Aldhelm's are included in activities when pupils visit from these link schools. In addition to this, we also provide opportunities for families to host Chinese students when they visit our school. 

In upper Key Stage 2 there are opportunities for some children to go on trips to France and China to experience the different cultures first hand. 


For more information on EAL Induction and Assessment, please see our Inclusion Policy.


Helpful Links

Online safety leaflets in different languages 


Young Interpreters

Young Interpreters