Blog entry by Astrid Dinneen

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by Astrid Dinneen - Thursday, 11 July 2019, 3:38 PM
Anyone in the world

Last September we kicked off our second year of blogging with an article introducing our new EAL Excellence Award, a self-evaluation tool for schools created with a view to support practitioners in developing EAL practice and provision. As they are about to break for their Summer holiday the Hampshire EMTAS Specialist Teacher Advisors reflect on their work with schools using the EAL Excellence Award in their area. 

 
 
Getting ready 
The award was met with much enthusiasm after its launch in our blog and during network meetings. Practitioners found it helpful as a way of mapping out the areas where provision was already strong whilst identifying areas for development. For example, many schools identified the need to appoint and train an EAL Governor. They reflected on policies and the importance of writing a stand-alone EAL policy. The self-evaluation tool also highlighted staff training needs which we supported through bespoke sessions as well as our e-learning. Feedback from schools indicated that they found the self-evaluation criteria relevant and purposeful.   
 
Some schools have collated evidence into folders to make the validation visit as smooth as possible. They have used each statement from the EXA as a divider and then placed any appropriate evidence, such as lesson plans, copies of school policies or photos of work, into each section. This made the validation process relatively straightforward since all the evidence could be found in one place. For one school, the portfolio of evidence was a piece of work which particularly impressed the Ofsted inspectors.
 
 
The validation process 
Validation visits were, in most cases, carried out by a Specialist Teacher Advisor not previously connected with the school in order to get a fresh take on practice and provision.  It has also been great being able to meet Young Interpreters in some schools and in one school there was even the chance to meet with the school governor responsible for EAL. This was supplemented by tours to see displays and collections of resources in the library or in classrooms.  One tip for schools thinking about gaining their own award might be to take pictures of anything ephemeral like a classroom display and keep them in readiness.   
 
 
What’s next? 
Since the launch of these materials in September there has been interest from colleagues beyond the bounds of Hampshire. Schools have already purchased licenses to use the tool within their establishment and EAL specialists have been trained as validators to work with schools in their own locality. If you are interested in finding out more, please contact: Chris.Pim@hants.gov.uk.
 
More materials will be produced to support schools with gaining their EAL Excellence Award in 2019-20. There will also be training opportunities to support aspects of the framework which some schools have found trickier e.g. using first language as a tool for learning. We will also work with our current bronze schools who might be thinking about developing their practice and provision towards silver.
 
Building on the success of the EAL Excellence Award, the EMTAS Traveller Team have introduced a Traveller Excellence Award that is currently being piloted in eight schools all around Hampshire. We hope to present our first award early in the Autumn term. This award helps schools audit their provision for their Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities and helps to ensure that all staff are well informed about the different GRT cultures in their setting. If you are interested in finding out more, please contact: Claire.Barker@hants.gov.uk. 
 
 
Finally... 
We congratulate the following schools for their hard work in achieving their award:  

Bronze  

Cherbourg Primary School, Eastleigh

Cove School, Farnborough

Hiltingbury Infants, Eastleigh

Marlborough Infant School, Aldershot

Merton Infant School, Basingstoke

New Milton Infant School, New Milton

South Farnborough Infant School, Farnborough

St John the Baptist Primary School, Andover 

The Wavell School, Farnborough

Weeke Primary, Winchester 

 

Silver 

Cherrywood Community Primary School, Farnborough

Harestock Primary, Winchester 

Ranvilles Infant School, Fareham

St John the Baptist Primary School, Fareham 

Wellington Community Primary School, Aldershot

 
Visit our website to find out more about the EAL Excellence Award and contact the Specialist Teacher Advisor for your area to book a visit:  

Basingstoke & Deane: Astrid Dinneen, astrid.dinneen@hants.gov.uk 

Eastleigh and Test Valley: Jamie Earnshaw, jamie.earnshaw@hants.gov.uk

Fareham and Gosport: Chris Pim, chris.pim@hants.gov.uk

Hart, Rushmoor and East Hants: Claire Barker, Claire.Barker@hants.gov.uk

Havant and Waterlooville: Chris Pim, chris.pim@hants.gov.uk

Isle of Wight: Lynne Chinnery Lynne.Chinnery@hants.gov.uk  

New Forest – Lisa Kalim, lisa.kalim@hants.gov.uk

Winchester: Sarah Coles, sarah.c.coles@hants.gov.uk 

 

[ Modified: Friday, 4 October 2019, 1:05 PM ]
 

  
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