Understanding, using, and creating oral, written, and visual texts of increasing complexity is at the heart of English teaching and learning.

Students at Al-Madinah come from various linguistic backgrounds. For most English is a second language and for many it is either a third or fourth language. The English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) programme offered at school helps the students gain confidence and competency in reading, writing, speaking and listening skills in English.

All our English teachers together with the teacher aides from Primary through to Intermediate to Secondary are involved in planning, providing resources and teaching the students.

Students at entry are tested and then given the required support. The programme English Language Learning Progressions (ELLPS) is used throughout to measure the ability of the students at different levels as they move through school.

Some useful links and support for us have been:


The goal of ESOL in Primary School:  To use students  Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills (BICSS) and  establish Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency (CALP).

Keeping in mind that it takes learners of new a language about 2 years to develop BICS and about 5 years to develop CALP, we continue our ESOL support throughout primary school if needs persist. Academic language is used in the classrooms therefore we have a strong support system in place.

Students are identified for ESOL needs as soon as they are enrolled. Several assessments including observations, SEA, Six Year Net tests, Running Records, Writing samples, and NZCER tests such as STAR, PAT Reading Comprehension, PAT Punctuation and Grammar and Oral assessments  data are  used for identification. We also use JOST by MoE,  Biks and Gutches  and Record of Oral Language by Marie Clay for further screening and supporting students.

Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency (CALP) focuses on proficiency in academic language or language used in the classroom in the various content areas. Besides acquiring the language, students learn to develop skills such as comparing, classifying, synthesizing, evaluating, and inferring when developing academic competence.

Class teachers and English Language Learning Assistants (ELLA) work with the identified students.