New Perspectives… on enhancing the achievement of young bilingual learners


This course will help teachers working in primary schools to consider how best to enhance the achievement of children from minority ethnic backgrounds, especially bilingual children. It highlights how to identify and improve those aspects of provision appropriate to children of all ethnic and linguistic groups and those specific to particular ones. The course draws on a research project in schools in Newham and Sheffield looking at the needs of children of Bangladeshi heritage. This resulted in the training materials ‘Enhancing Achievement for Young Bilingual Learners’, which provide a way of auditing provision and will be available to course participants.


This course is designed for headteachers, members of leadership teams and teachers in primary schools serving ethnically and linguistically diverse communities and those supporting such schools. It will be especially valuable where two participants can attend from a school or Local Authority.


The course will be run ideally as a training day or, if need be, a set of two or three staff meetings. Where there are separate sessions, additional benefit can be gained by the reflection and conversation which occurs, and is encouraged, between sessions. This also provides the opportunity to gather data and/or use the audit tool. For individual schools, a conversation with the head, or senior member of staff, will be necessary, in advance, to determine the current level of knowledge and experience of potential participants and to establish the specific objectives to be met.


Session 1: Introduction to research issues related to minority ethnic achievement and bilingualism

Session 2: The advantages and disadvantages of examining and challenging attitudes related to particular ethnic groups

The value and purpose of auditing provision and how this can be linked to practice

Session 3: Collecting and using data intelligently, as a school, including suggestions for how best to use the audit tool

Implications for provision and pedagogy

Action planning –what next?

Each session will use involve short presentations, group work and discussion, with a research-informed focus on practice, enabling participants to reflect on, and share, their own good practice and that highlighted by the training materials and by other participants.


Participants will be helped to:

• understand the research background to the achievement of minority ethnic, and especially bilingual, children of primary school age;

• consider how a range of data on their own school’s provision should be collected and used intelligently, with an introduction to the purpose of auditing provision for all, and for specific, ethnic groups;

• know how to use the audit tool and recognise how this can help to challenge stereotypes, raise expectations and meet the needs of specific ethnic groups; and

• reflect on the implications for themselves and their school community, in terms of pedagogy and the provision of a broad, balanced and appropriate curriculum.

This course can be linked to the development of policies on learning and teaching policy and equal opportunities and/or the self-evaluation process. As with all ‘New Perspectives …’ courses, it is hoped that participants will come to see their teaching in fresh and innovative ways, building on and enhancing their professional knowledge and providing new energy and motivation.

To discuss this course, or others offered by ‘New Perspectives…’, and how they can be most useful in your own context, please feel free to contact Dr Tony Eaude, 6 Long Wall, Littlemore, Oxford, OX4 4PG on 01865 711135 (phone/fax) or