Sharing Camden Practice

KS3 New Arrivals Induction Programme

Key Points

  • Students new to English and the UK are provided with an understanding of what to expect in each curriculum area
  • This outcome-driven course introduces the various teaching and learning styles they will encounter in the classroom


What were your reasons for doing this development work?

Hampstead School is a large secondary school and has a diverse intake, including students from seventy different language backgrounds and who come from a broad range of socioeconomic backgrounds. Since the early 1990s, Hampstead School has had an intake of between six to ten new arrivals each year, and the school aspires to ensure that the needs of all its students are recognised and met in order for all students to achieve well. In 2005, the school established an induction programme that ensures that every student develops both the English language skills and key concepts required to succeed in all subjects across the curriculum. As a time-limited programme, there is a clear outcome at the end of the twelve-month course, and students gain the confidence to be independent learners.

Who were the identified target learners?

This time-bound, outcome-derived course is designed for students who arrive new to the UK and are new to the English language.

What were your success criteria?

  • The success criteria are that every single student makes visible progress, is successfully integrated into school life and is able to cope better with the demands of mainstream lessons.
  • Subject teachers employ strategies to support the continued progress of students who are new to English.

What did you do? (What success criteria did you use?)

  • Prior to the induction course, the EMA (Ethnic Minority Achievement) Co-ordinator contacts heads of faculty / subject leaders for specific contributions (the key skills, concepts and vocabulary that the faculty/subject deems most important for the learners). This requires the departments to have a very clear understanding of the language demands of the curriculum area. In this way, the induction course is specific to the school and is ‘owned’ by the curriculum areas.
  • The EMA Co-ordinator works with the curriculum leaders to develop appropriate material to cover a two-hour lesson.
  • Students are assessed for English language skills, observed in lessons and once selected letters are sent home to parents/carers to explain the purpose of the course. Students fill out a questionnaire at the start of the course and again at the end, in order to hear the voice of the new arrivals and to make changes to the course where necessary. Staff receive information about the initial assessment of new arrivals at the start and their achievement at the end of the course.
  • Each week, the EMA teacher delivers a two-hour lesson covering one subject area. Each week, a new subject area is taught on the programme and in this way, the course is a rolling programme so that new arrivals can join at any time and complete the full fourteen-week programme (school programmes may vary between twelve and twenty weeks).
  • At the end of the course, parents receive a record of each student’s achievement and the school celebrates their achievement in an assembly, recognised via certification.

What specific teaching resources did you use?

The teaching resources are specific to the needs of each department across the school and the materials are designed collaboratively so that the mainstream subjects are clearly aware of the content of the programme. The focus of the course is on developing the spoken language but all four communication skills are explicitly taught.

Outcomes and Impact

What has been the impact on pupil learning and teaching?

  • Each faculty is more aware of the needs of the new arrivals and recognise the responsibility of each subject to ensure the continued progress of all learners.
  • This course raises the profile of Inclusion as a whole-school responsibility.
  • All students have access to the curriculum and continue to make good progress and grow in confidence as learners in their new school.
  • Students are assessed continuously which ensures that progress is visible.

Evidence of impact on pupil learning and teaching/leadership

  • The raised profile of EMA as a source of expertise has led to teachers seeking continued support from the EMA team. This has ensured that mainstream staff are better equipped to provide structured and contextualised and achievable tasks.
  • Materials developed in partnership for the Induction course are used by mainstream teachers and by the homework clubs.
  • The course has provided good professional development opportunities for mainstream teachers in raising their awareness of the language demands of their subject.
  • Students come out of the Induction course knowing a little bit more about the key skills needed in the history classroom such as an understanding of chronology, information extraction skills, sequencing and biography work, which helps them in the mainstream lessons.’
  • ‘The Induction course has been very helpful. I have learned a lot of English and it helps me with learning subjects like History, Geography and Art.’
  • All students make visible progress and all students report that they feel more integrated to school life as a result of the course, as evidenced in the post-course questionnaire.
  • All students make accelerated progress and function as independent learners and are able to mentor newer arrivals.
  • All new arrivals stay in the school through Key Stage 4 and some move into the Sixth Form.