English as an additional language

The English as an Additional Language (EAL) team works with children and young people and their families across East Ayrshire who come from varied cultural and linguisticbackgrounds. Over 20 languages are spoken in East Ayrshire, including Polish, Russian, Tagalog, Arabic, Latvian, Chinese and Urdu. EAL pupils are supported in over 20 establishments. Pupils are valued as individuals and as members of their particular ethnic or cultural group. They are encouraged to recognise and acknowledge their bilingualism as a positive attribute.

The EAL team is part of the East Ayrshire Support Team (EAST). It provides support for children and young people in East Ayrshire who:

  • have little or no English
  • have limited English
  • appear fluent in English but are not achieving to their full potential

The EAL team is made up of a small group of teachers and bilingual support assistants (BSA) who work in schools and nurseries across the authority on a peripatetic basis. They provide support within the pupil’s mainstream establishment. A Principal Teacher has first line responsibility for the EAL team. Support is provided for children and young people within their mainstream establishments.

What the service does

The EAL team supports learning and teaching at all levels for pupils in East Ayrshire whose first language is not English. It works closely with pupils’ class and subject teachers to provide support in all curricular areas.

The team are able to carry out initial assessments as well as offering support with further assessment as required. It takes part in multi-disciplinary planning and review meetings where appropriate. Team members undertake additional training and are able to support nurseries and schools in creating a supportive environment for children and young people whose first language is not English. The team is also able to provide advice and information on alternative courses and examinations for secondary pupils.

Close links with parents and carers are established through informal visits and discussions, open days and parents’ evenings. In addition, a range of materials and supports in community languages have been developed to increase support to pupils as well as to increase parental support and involvement. The EAL team provides CPD about strategies, advice and information regarding the learning needs of EAL pupils.

Policy statement

Download the English as an Additional Language Policy Statement.

Contact Information

East Ayrshire Support Team (EAST)
Crosshouse Campus
Playingfield Road
Crosshouse
KA2 0JJ
01563 554974
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