English as an Additional Language (EAL)

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Welcome to the EAL Department

EAL stands for English as an Additional Language.

In our school more than 40 languages are spoken and almost 40% of our students speak English as an additional language.

Our EAL support provision is based on an accurate assessment of students’ prior knowledge and experience as well as language skills. This assessment is carried out by the EAL Specialist when the students join the college. Students learning EAL are generally taught in the mainstream class alongside their peers. Newly arrived students who cannot access the curriculum because of the language barrier are given withdrawal specialist EAL support to acquire the level of English needed to access the curriculum and are also taught strategies to learn in a language that is not their first language by the EAL specialist.

Classroom teachers are responsible for ensuring that all students can participate in lessons by always taking into account the needs of the EAL learners who attend their lessons.

EAL Specialist Support

Ms Maffei is the EAL Specialist Teacher and Coordinator, her role includes:

  • Carrying out the initial assessment of students’ standards of English.
  • Providing withdrawal specialist EAL language support for new EAL arrivals to acquire the level of English needed to access the curriculum and teach strategies to learn in a language that is not their first language.
  • Where appropriate, providing withdrawal EAL support for a set period of time to address a specific language focus for the advanced EAL learners in order to improve their academic English.
  • Giving guidance and support to set targets and plan appropriate work.
  • Providing a Personal Learning Plan where appropriate.
  • Monitoring the teaching and learning of students with EAL.
  • Reporting the progress of EAL students to SLT.
  • Supporting the EAL students both academically and pastorally working in partnership with parents/carers, Heads of Houses, teaching and support staff, the Student Support Officer, the Exams Officer and external agencies where appropriate.
  • Acting as coach and training teachers in how to best teach and support EAL students with Adaptive Teaching techniques to ensure that all students can access the lesson and meet learning aims.
  • Carrying out a reassessment of the English level of students each year and this data is tracked and monitored to ensure that all students are making good progress.

EAL Option KS4 (Years 10 and 11)

Aims of the course

We offer an Academic English option for a select number of students for whom English is an additional language. The aims of the Academic English course are for students to improve their written, spoken and understanding of English to a sufficiently high level that they are able to demonstrate their understanding and ability in a range of subjects at GCSE level.

Course contents

The course content varies depending on the students’ level of English and their abilities.

The course is tailored to the student and is a mixture of guided independent learning, group study and one-to-one formative assessment.


Essential Grammar for Elementary learners of English.

English Grammar in use for Intermediate learners of English.

Advanced Grammar for Advanced learners of English.

Strategies and skills development in an additional language

  • Note-taking
  • Summary writing
  • Reading comprehension
  • Composition writing
  • Listening
  • Speaking
  • Vocabulary building


  • Descriptive
  • Advice
  • Narrative
  • Opinion
  • Analysis

Qualification details

The EAL Academic English KS4 Option does not in itself result in a formal qualification. It supports students in achieving their potential in subjects across the curriculum.

EAL Surgery

On Monday after school there is an “EAL Surgery” in the EAL classroom: Students may attend the surgery if they need help with any kind of issues, both pastoral or academic, if they have questions, or if they wish to attend an after school session of reading, speaking or grammar.

Support and guidance for parents/carers

The EAL Coordinator takes part in the admission process to meet, welcome and establish an ongoing communication with all parents/carers of our New Arrival EAL students; when needed, she will explain the British scholastic system and will help new students’ families to familiarise with our school system and school community. At Chesterton we believe that communication and cooperation between staff and parents/ carers is an essential factor for our students to succeed.

Community Club

Community Club runs every Tuesday from 3:10 to 4pm and is open to all students. The members meet and learn about different cultures and languages and new students make new friends by taking part in many activities such as: playing games from all over the world, exploring communication activities, listening to international music and taking part in group discussions on different topics.

Community Club members take an active role in school’s events such as: World Book Evening, Open Evening, Drama and Music performances, Art Competitions and more.

This club is run by Ms. Maffei

First Language GCSE

Students who are fluent in their native language are encouraged to take a GCSE in the summer term. We can offer past papers, support materials, entry fees, and advice. Most of the work towards these exams is done independently by the students with the support of their parents/carers.

For further information about the First Language GCSE programme you can contact Ms Alfaro, Head of MFL.

Useful information

  • You can find our EAL policy here.
  • For further information you can email Ms Maffei.

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