ESOL Programmes Years 7-10

St. Michael’s Senior School is home to a number of International pupils. Pupils from the age of 11 up to 18 can join a number of programmes dependent on their current English levels and academic background. The ESOL and subject teaching team at St. Michael’s School are committed to the personal and academic development of each of our pupils. Our international pupils join us with varying abilities of English Language and our aim is to accommodate and provide for individual needs. Pupils are streamed based on their language ability following a full placement test and interview.

Courses on offer years 7-10:

ESOL Intensive
ESOL with GCSE Preparation Programme – Cambridge PET and Cambridge First

As a guide, language levels required for each programme are as follows:
ESOL Intensive – Starter or Beginner level for Year 7 entry
GCSE Preparation Programme – IELTS 3-4 or equivalent
GCSE programme – IELTS 5.5 or equivalent

ESOL classes in St Mikes are usually small, allowing almost individual attention. A friendly, positive atmosphere and excellent relationships with staff are strong features of lessons and pupils feel comfortable and able to ask questions or request further help. All pupils can benefit from additional tuition to further their language skills according to individual needs. The aim is to enable pupils to study confidently and successfully through the medium of English to ensure that all international pupils achieve the best results in all of their subjects.

Grammar is covered thoroughly, as are the Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing skills. Particular attention is also paid to improving pronunciation, fluency and clarity of speech as well as broadening vocabulary to aid pupil learning in all subject studies. We also work closely with the English department to support pupils in their English Literature and Language work where a need is identified.

Progress tests on all key skills take place throughout the year as well as exams at Christmas and at the end of the school year.

Key ESOL areas include:

• active speaking with role play, pair work, group discussions, debates and presentations
• listening to a wide range of authentic audio materials and watching and reviewing DVDs and online content
• practical grammar to aid fluency, confidence and writing skills
• expanding active and passive vocabulary on all key topics
• better communication strategies
• confident and fluent reading, increasing reading speed and comprehension
• improved writing in both formal and informal contexts on topics pupils will experience in their pre-GCSE and GCSE studies
• computer based learning using a variety of online resources and educational software
• use of IT for research / project work and online practice
• improved study skills, such as paraphrasing and note taking

GCSE Preparation Programmes Years 7-9

GCSE Preparation Programme 1
Required English level: IELTS 3-3.5 or equivalent.
Those pupils with weaker English will follow a full course of ESOL to increase their language development combined with Maths, Science and ICT. All students will also take: Art, Drama, Humanities, Music and Sports together with a programme of activities.

GCSE Preparation Programme 2
Required English level: IELTS 4 or equivalent.
Those pupils with a slightly higher level of English will follow a reduced course of ESOL. This is combined with Art, Drama, English, Humanities, ICT, Maths, Music, Science and Sports & Activities.

Course Progression

Pupils whose English level is considered too low for GCSE entry are enrolled onto the Cambridge PET course. These pupils would then progress onto the Cambridge English First course. The exam can be taken in Year 11.

English with GCSE -> GCSE programme

Pupils will require English levels of CEFR B1, IELTS 4.5, Cambridge PET or equivalent to join this programme. We would expect pupils who are 14 and who have completed the English with ESOL programme to move onto the GCSE course. This would be dependent on reaching a level equivalent to Cambridge PET merit or distinction / English First Pass or IELTS 5.5. Pupils may require additional ESOL lessons if their language level is deemed inadequate to fully follow a GCSE curriculum.

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