St. James’ School has a diverse mix of nationalities throughout the School. Within the boarding house there are students who are British, Chinese, German, Spanish, French, Vietnamese, Swedish and Cantonese. This broad mix ensures that English is the school’s language and is the one common language throughout the boarding houses. The school’s EAL Department includes a highly-qualified teacher who liaises closely with curriculum teachers to ensure that all students’ needs are met. In addition, we have EAL Teaching assistants who teach International Students on a one-to-one basis and also go into core subject lessons with them. We also have support from the GAP students within the school (this year from Australia, Ireland and Germany).
In addition, the EAL teacher will appoint International Students from the Sixth to act as International Student Liaison Officers; this is a huge support to our International students. This is not only a great help for new International Students, younger International Students and the EAL Department, but it is great experience for the Sixth Form students who are selected and is a valued addition to their UCAS Application and CV. The responsibilities of this role include:
- To meet any new student on his/her first day.
- To help new students with understanding their school timetable.
- To help new students understand the school rules.
- To help new students to understand the boarding school routines.
- To be like a ‘friend’ to the new student.
- To be ready to listen to any questions that the new student has and refer them to the relevant teacher when necessary.
- To listen to any concerns the new student has and to then report these to the relevant staff.
- To help with any language difficulties that the student may have in school.
- To be available to support students in the EAL department each week under the supervision of the EAL teacher (NB this is only during free study periods).
- To act as a support to all International Students in the School
Classes are small as with the rest of the school. Sixth Form students are specifically prepared for University life and are given a huge amount of support in choosing their career options an doing through the UCAS process. Our highly-experienced boarding staff ensure that all nationalities fit in well with school life, with the result that all nationalities/cultures are made to feel welcome.