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MISY Myanmar International School Yangon

English as an Additional Language (EAL) for Secondary

Anna Lowe
Anna Loewy

EAL stands for English as an Additional Language and is offered for students who require extra support or particular learning strategies to aid their English language acquisition.

At MISY, the language of instruction is English and the school follows the English National Curriculum ESL Primary and Cambridge Secondary Curriculum, which is based on the national Curriculum in England. As the vast majority of students at MISY are learning English as an additional language, the EAL programme seeks to support learning throughout the primary and secondary levels.

The English as an Additional Language (EAL) Programme is a paid programme designed to provide academic and social language support for non-native speakers of English from Year 2 through to Year 12. 

The primary purpose of the programme is to ensure that all students become proficient in English and achieve academic success. Therefore, language skills and strategies are integrated with content area and subject matter whenever possible. The EAL Programme addresses individualized needs and learning styles through one-on-one, small group instruction, so called pull-out lessons, and in-class support, also called co-teaching lessons, working with the EAL students in the mainstream classroom in consultation with the mainstream teacher.

The second purpose of the programme is to promote multilingualism and cultural pluralism. Based on the latest research regarding language and cognitive development, children should be encouraged to maintain and develop their mother tongues, be it Myanmar, Chinese or any other language.

Our EAL Programme promotes curricular integration and student engagement. We hold ourselves accountable for differentiating instruction and co-teaching with colleagues to best address each child’s learning style and language needs.

EAL Entry Criteria

If a class teacher is concerned about the English progress of one of their students, the following procedure is followed:

  • The class teacher refers the student to the EAL department.
  • The EAL department administers a WIDA test with the student.
  • If they score below a level 4 for Primary or Level 5 for Secondary in all, or nearly all, language skill areas. (Speaking, Listening, Writing and Reading), the EAL department will accept the student onto the EAL programme.

Secondary EAL Exit Criteria

The following criteria are used for deciding when a secondary student is ready to discontinue EAL support:

The student's reading level is at grade level or above, as indicated by standardized reading assessments (e.g., Tests of Reading Comprehension, Diagnostic Reading Assessment)

  • The WIDA Model test results or proficiency level designations (1-6) show the KS3 student is at least at the Bridging level (5) in all four language skills areas, and the KS4 student, at the Reaching level (6).
  • All grade-level assessments and reporting documents (both formal and informal) show the student is working confidently and competitively at grade level.
  • The student's core content teachers agree that the student is able to succeed in mainstream classes without further language or academic support as indicated on the Secondary School EAL Exit Form.