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EAL in international schools

Looking for guidance on how to best support the EAL learners in your international school?

You’ve come to the right place! In this section we offer examples of EAL best practice, courses and resources which are specific to international schools. We also share some frequently asked questions and insights relating to a range of EAL learners.

If you would like to discuss anything you read about here please get in touch.

Best practice examples

Our EAL Quality Mark award is popular among schools who want to:
– gain a clearer picture of the scope and success of their EAL provision
– identify gaps in their EAL provision and consider how to address them

Over 50 schools have achieved the EAL Quality Mark to date. Each term we invite some of our award winning schools to talk about their EAL provision on our free webinar.

Each webinar is recorded and, following the session, everyone who registers for the event is sent a link to the webinar recording and any resources presented. 

We also share the details of the excellent practices demonstrated by the award winners on our News page. Click on the links below to read about some of our award winners for EAL in international schools.

Case studies

International school staff share some of the strategies successfully employed in their schools to support their EAL learners.

How an emphasis on speaking and listening leads to high levels of literacy
Sara Beddoes – International Section at the Collège, Lycée, Prépas Sainte Anne in Brest

Embedding a successful approach to EAL across the school
Gary Crick – Head of Learning Support at The International School @ Park City, Kuala Lumpur

Teaching writing in A Level History
Kate Simpson-Holley and Richard Blant
– Jack Hunt Secondary School, UK

The positive impact of TEMC training on a multiple site school
Stephen Morris – EAL, Language, and Literacy Coordinator, formerly of British International School, Ukraine

The experience of a young refugee growing up in Denmark and the UK (in Danish)
Mona Bani – Director of Revoke, advocating for the rights and welfare of young refugees and asylum seekers

Our work with the British Section at the Lycée International, Saint Germain-en-Laye

Following a day long interview/planning session with the school leaders we designed a two year academic literacy programme for all secondary teachers, including training, in class coaching and joint classroom resources development. 

We went on to provide training and a handbook for History and Geography teachers across the ASIBA group of schools. Most recently we have worked with primary teachers on assessment frameworks and developing a curriculum which supports pupils to read and write the key text types (or genres) they will encounter.

"The EAL Academy has given us an approach to literacy rooted in theory and practice and customised precisely to our circumstances and requirements. The impact was immediate and tangible: for weeks afterwards staff were telling me how delighted their students were to learn how easily they could make their writing more formal by turning verbs into abstract nouns and that they knew the name for this process: nominalisation."
James Cathcart
Director of the British Section at the Lycée International, Saint Germain-en-Laye

Read James Cathcart’s article about our work together in International School Leader Magazine (April 2021)

"I wanted to thank you again for such an excellent training session. The staff were energized and enthused by it and once again it has given the section a powerful platform for us all to develop our practice further."
David Jackson
Deputy Director of the British Section at the Lycée International, Saint Germain-en-Laye


Most of our courses are relevant across phases and we have some excellent courses specifically tailored for EAL in international schools.

Learning in multilingual classrooms

Online course

This course looks at the choices we make about which language to use and the ability of many pupils to operate effectively in two or more languages.


EAL in an international school context

Online course

This course looks at some key aspects of EAL provision, such as the range of assessment arrangements and the falling number of native English speakers able to provide good models of English, from an international school perspective.

EAL in primary

Leading EAL in primary schools

Online course

This 12-hour course aims to develop the leadership of EAL in primary schools where there are increasing numbers of pupils learning English as an additional language. Focusing on a whole school approach, the course provides guidance on how to plan and prioritise provision for a range of EAL learners.

EAL in secondary

Leading EAL in secondary schools

Online course

This 12-hour course aims to develop the leadership of EAL in secondary schools where there are increasing numbers of English as an additional language students. Focusing on a whole school and subject-based approach, the course provides guidance on how to plan and prioritise provision for a range of EAL learners.

Check out our full range of online EAL courses including SEND, primary and secondary options.

Looking for an extended EAL course?

We offer a six month, part time course covering a range of EAL topics. 


We share a range of useful tools, articles and data in our free downloads library.
Our collection of EAL data, templates, articles and resources are largely relevant across all phases.

EAL Handbook
Our popular EAL Handbook (available in hard copy or in pdf format) is relevant across all phases and has a specific section on new arrivals at different phases of education:
– The early years
– Key stages 1 and 2
– Non-literate new arrivals
– Speaking and listening with Year Two pupils
– Key stages 3 and 4

What our clients say

Frequently asked questions

What do I do with a new arrival in my classroom who doesn’t understand anything I say in English?

My EAL pupils speak English well and with a good local accent, but as soon as they start writing it’s obvious English is not their first language. What do I do?

How do I ensure my school has systems that help new arrivals fit in and make a flying start?

My pupils write reasonably in English, but it is obvious they don’t understand how academic English works. What do I do?

Do you have any questions?