Students whose first language is not English, sit a diagnostic test to ascertain their level of proficiency in the English language. According to the results of this test, students may be entered into the English Support (ES) programme and, if needed, also receive Additional English Support in place of a foreign language. Student progress is reviewed towards the end of each semester in order to determine if future support will be needed.
The ES programme is based on the Cambridge Primary English as a Second Language. The curriculum is presented in five content areas or strands. The learning outcomes in each strand for each successive stage are defined in terms of what learners should be able to do in English. The five strands are: reading; writing; use of English; listening; and speaking. The curriculum provides a comprehensive set of progressive learning objectives for learners of English as a Second Language. These are based on the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), which is used widely both within and beyond Europe to map learners’ progression in English. The framing of learning objectives as a progressive can-do sequence should encourage the use of learning centred, activity-based approaches by teachers in the implementation of the curriculum frameworks. The Cambridge Primary English as a Second Language curriculum framework provides a solid foundation on which the later stages of education can be built.