Admissions and Induction Policy

Rationale

This policy has been drawn up by staff to address the needs of the changing population of Oakdale Junior School. It takes into account the five outcomes of Every Child Matters and uses as its base the document Safe, Settled and Valued, produced by Redbridge Networked Learning Communities.

Oakdale Junior School, in common with many other schools in Redbridge, is experiencing increasing mobility of pupils, particularly minority ethnic pupils, many of whom speak English as an additional language (EAL). It is important to help these new pupils settle quickly into the school. They need to feel safe, settled and valued in order to learn and progress.

Although this policy addresses the needs of EAL pupils in particular, much is relevant to all pupils.

Aims

  • New pupils will feel safe, settled and valued.
  • Parents will feel welcomed and their opinions valued.
  • Staff will be familiar with the school procedures for the admission and induction of new pupils.
  • The educational needs of new pupils will be identified quickly.
  • Necessary support will be put in place quickly.

Part A

Admission Procedures

 School is notified by admissions, by email or letter, giving details on new pupils

Admin. assistant informs headteacher and keeps papers on file awaiting the contact by parents

Admin. assistant checks date of birth to ascertain year group and ethnicity code

Admin. assistant checks class sizes and identifies potential class

School is contacted by parents/carers

  • Admin. assistant invites parents/carers to an admission welcome interview
  • Admin. assistant agrees time and date with parents and informs them of any necessary documentation they should bring. They are asked to bring their child with them
  • Headteacher is informed of interview
  • Admin. assistant collects together the necessary documentation – prospectus, uniform list, etc.
  • Headteacher and admin. assistant allocate class and inform the class teacher

Admission welcome interview

  • Family is met by Parent Support Advisor
  • Tour of school undertaken – including meeting with class and teacher
  • Forms completed, with support as needed
  1.                                           I.     Admissions (Appendix 1)
  2.                                          II.     Permission for local journeys
  3.                                        III.     Internet use
  4.                                        IV.     Home School Agreement
  • Additional background information is gathered if the child is a New Arrival with little or no English. (Appendix 2)
  • Date for starting is arranged
  • Admin. assistant verifies documentation and takes photocopies
  • Admin. assistant gives details of uniform, term dates, school times and school meals
  • Parents are given any other information that might be useful from other agencies

After the interview

  • Parent Support Advisor passes on information to EMA coordinator or SENCO if appropriate
  • Admin. assistant contacts previous school, if applicable, to obtain UPN and records
  • Admin. assistant draws up new file and ensures that all documentation is ready – registers, etc.
  • Admin. assistant passes on information to class teacher

Part B

Class Allocation

The following factors are considered:

  • where spaces are available
  • which class provides an appropriate environment/setting
  • the need to maintain the balance of ethnicity, gender, languages and SEN within the class
  • the new pupil should have someone from the same background and sharing the same community language to support them in class if possible

 Part C

Preparing for new pupil’s arrival

 The Pupils

  • Are informed of new arrival and involved in discussion about how they might be able to help
  • Learn to say ‘hello’ in home language of new pupil
  • Learn to pronounce new pupil’s name correctly
  • A buddy (or buddies) is chosen – with same home language if possible

Resources

  • Tray, clothes peg, table, pens, etc. are organised in advance
  • Welcome pack is ready to take home – with newsletter, learning intentions, pictorial timetable, curriculum guidance, support, etc
  • Pupil’s name is spelt correctly wherever written
  • Seat next to a buddy is arranged

Curriculum

  • Introductory activities are ready
  • Dual language books, dictionary, tapes and CDs are available
  • Visual, practical resources are prepared to support teaching and learning
  • Steps are taken to reflect the new pupil’s background in curriculum and resources

Support

  • LSA support is arranged
  • If siblings arrive together, they are provided with opportunities to get together during the day
  • Relevant information is shared with all staff involved with the new pupil
  • Parent/carer is allowed to stay and support their child if appropriate

 Part D

 First Day

 Arrival

  • New pupil is met by buddy and/or member of staff, usually the class teacher, in reception area at 8.45
  • Pupil is taken to class and shown their seat, peg, tray, etc.
  • First day/week could be shortened if appropriate – e.g. half day at first, building up over first week
  • Parent/carer/older sibling may be invited to stay to support initially

 Teacher:

  • Welcomes and introduces new pupil to the class
  • Uses friendly and affirming body language
  • Displays the pupil’s language and culture in the classroom through books, visuals and labelling
  • Ensures the pupil enjoys the same rights as the rest of the class
  • Allows the pupil time and space to be silent and settle in new environment
  • Ensures that the pupil is looked after and is coping during changeovers
  • Acknowledges that pupil may have different educational, cultural or personal experiences
  • Observes the pupil informally during the day to see how they are coping

Buddy/buddies

  • Stays with the new pupil throughout day, including lunchtimes and breaks
  • Shows the new pupil class routines
  • Shows the new pupil where the toilets are and ensures they know to use them at break times
  • Chats to the new pupil in the playground and includes them in games
  • Gives the pupil a tour of the school, showing them key places and people

Support

New Arrivals are supported during their first 2 days at Oakdale by the school’s bilingual assistant. They are taught some basic survival language – e.g. how to ask to go to the toilet

End of day

  • Class teacher meets parents/carers to hand over new pupil and begin to build links
  • Class teacher records brief notes of child’s first day and any possible points that need action/liaison with other people (SENCO/EMA coordinator)

Part E

 First Week

The teacher should:

  • Allow the new pupil time and space to settle
  • Be consistent in approach
  • Involve the pupil in classroom routines
  • Ensure classroom routines are clear and consistent
  • Provide opportunities for the pupil to interact with their peers through sharing books, playing games, collaborative activities, etc.
  • Observe the pupil within class groups rather than withdrawing pupil
  • Notice what the pupil enjoys and extend it – build into collaborative and group activities
  • Not put the pupil in the bottom group unless confident this is where the child needs to be – preferably include in each teacher focus group
  • Place the new pupil in the middle literacy and numeracy sets so that they can be moved up or down as their level of ability becomes clearer
  • Arrange one small group session outside the class to allow pastoral support and appropriate group activities
  • Continue positive relationships with parents – e.g. informal meetings at beginning and end of day
  • Award a merit in the Friday assembly to welcome the child to the school – call their name last so they can see what they need to do

When planning the curriculum the teacher should:

  • Make language diversity within the class visible – e.g. displays
  • Plan for purposeful talk and collaboration
  • Include practical and visual activities
  • Choose books with repetitive texts
  • Provide suitable activities that give full access to the curriculum
  • Where possible, adapt the class activity – e.g. develop own book on topic, key vocabulary, simple sentences and pictures
  • In situations where new pupil is a beginner in English and where curriculum content is very abstract and removed from pupil’s experience (e.g. The Tudors or personification in poetry) it is not necessary for the new pupil to follow every curriculum activity exactly – have other activities available – e.g. write/draw book about ‘myself’, artwork, dual text book and tape, work to develop their basic skills

 

Part F

Continuing support

 The teacher should:

  • Ensure that the pupil continues to be welcomed and fully included in school activities
  • Ensure that the buddy/buddies are looking after the child appropriately
  • Ensure that the pupil is clear about school/class procedures and expectations
  • Take into account the pupil’s previous schooling (if any) – look at records from the previous school and follow up anything that needs clarifying
  • Continue to observe the pupil informally – do they appear to be settling?
  • Allow the pupil to go through a ‘silent period’ whilst settling in
  • Be aware that the EAL pupil’s understanding will be in advance of their spoken language
  • Be aware that the EAL pupil will acquire interpersonal communication skills well in advance of the language skills necessary for tackling academic tasks – be careful not to set tasks that are too linguistically demanding
  • Encourage all attempts at speaking English
  • Value and encourage the use of the pupil’s first language
  • Consider the groups to which the pupil has been allocated – are they still appropriate? – do they reflect the pupil’s cognitive ability and not their level in English?
  • Plan games and activities that allow the pupil to practise communication skills
  • Provide opportunities for collaborative group work and make sure that the EAL pupil has good English speaking role models
  • During paired discussion activities, place the new pupil with two good English speakers
  • Provide visual support for learning
  • Plan for plenty of practical activities
  • Prepare pupils for writing tasks by practical activities and discussion
  • Use teaching strategies such as modelling and demonstration
  • Provide writing frames
  • Provide dual language books and dictionaries
  • Choose curriculum content, books and resources that reflect the child’s cultural background
  • Liaise with parents to build up good home/school links
  • Liaise with other school coordinators – e.g. SENCO, EMA – to discuss pupil’s needs

 

Part G

 Monitoring progress

 The progress of all pupils is monitored by the class teacher and the assessment coordinator. In addition, the EMA coordinator tracks the progress of EAL pupils and arranges appropriate support if needed. The QCA Common Assessment Scale is used termly to track the progress of beginner bilingual pupils in speaking, listening, reading and writing.

 

Part H

Initial Pupil Profile

An Initial Pupil Profile is created of beginner bilingual pupils within a few weeks of their arrival to provide a baseline for future assessment of progress. Evidence is gathered through observation and assessment. The QCA Common Assessment Scale is used to assign levels to the pupil for speaking, listening, reading and writing. The Pupil Profile form is attached as Appendix 3 of this policy.

First Language Assessment

For some pupils it may be helpful to assess the child in their first language using an interpreter.

A first language assessment is particularly useful when an EAL pupil’s progress is causing concern compared with other bilingual peers from a similar background. It will help identify whether the pupil has language difficulties or other special educational needs in addition to the need to acquire English as an additional language.

Background information on the following will be gathered:

  • the pupil’s family and home experience
  • the pupil’s strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes as perceived by the parents
  • the pupil’s language history, including the languages spoken to different family members, and whether the child reads and writes a different language to their spoken language
  • the pupil’s schooling, including whether there have been any gaps in his/her schooling.

Preferably this information will have been gathered prior to the first language assessment, but it may be that the presence of the interpreter means that this is the first opportunity to gather detailed information.

The assessment will be designed to give information on:

  • The child’s first language skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing
  • Whether the child’s use of first language is age appropriate

The school uses LEA guidance as to appropriate tasks for the first language assessment – see EMA Handbook for guidance and First Language Assessment form.

Other assessment activities may include:

  • Talking about their family or what they like doing
  • Reading a dual language book and talking about what is happening in the story
  • Writing a picture or labelling it in first language
  • Completing a ‘Myself’ sheet
  • Sequencing pictures/sentences to tell a story and telling the story in their own words
  • Predicting the end of a story, verbally or in writing

Chart of responsibility

 

What Who Comments

 

 

Notification of new pupil Redbridge Admissions By email or letter
Collation of paperwork Admin. assistant  
Arrange visit and inform headteacher Admin. assistant  
Decision about class Headteacher/Admin. Assistant  
Inform the class teacher and EMA coordinator or SENCO if appropriate Admin. assistant

 

 
Tour of school Headteacher/deputy headteacher With interpreter if necessary
Form filling;

Verification and photocopying of documentation;

Information on uniform, school meals, dates, etc. to parents

Admin. assistant  
Collection of UPN number, records and admission onto roll Admin. assistant  
Pass information to relevant staff Admin. assistant  
Arrange appropriate resources Class teacher  
Arrange buddy/buddies Class teacher  
Plan appropriate learning activities Class teacher  
Record progress using NC levels and EALSteps Class teacher  
Initial assessment Class teacher/EMA coordinator Within one month of arrival
First language assessment EMA coordinator With interpreter
Tracking EMA coordinator/ Assessment coordinator