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English as an Additional Language (EAL)

Students at ISNS come from many different countries and speak many different languages. A large number come from backgrounds with Mandarin as their mother tongue.  Most have had some English language instruction in their previous schools. All students with less than 3 years of full English language instruction will be required to have an English language assessment as part of the admissions process. The results of these assessments provide necessary information for grade placement as well as a means of determining the level of EAL support necessary. 

Non-native English speaking students in Grades 2-10 are assessed using the Cambridge ESOL examination system to determine their proficiency level.  Students below Grade 2 or above Grade 10 are not assessed.  Students must obtain a minimum score on the assessment in order to be accepted into ISNS and move on to higher grade levels.

  • Grade 6 must have a minimum of an A1
  • Grade 7/8 must have a minimum of an A2
  • Grade 9 a minimum of a B1
  • Grade 10 a minimum of a B2

EAL Support

Students in the PYP will receive EAL (English as an Additional Language) Support that fits their level of need.  Support may take place in the regular classroom provided by a special EAL teacher or it may be conducted in small groups outside the classroom with an EAL teacher.  Students in Grades 6 to 12 are expected to function in mainstream classrooms without much additional English language support other than what can be provided by the main classroom teacher.

Chinese Language

Students from preschool to grade 10 are expected to participate in a daily Mandarin lesson. Classes from grades 2 to 10 are leveled based on assessment. The program of studies promotes language acquisition and refinement as well as exposure to cultural and artistic traditions.