There are two forms of additional support at Strathallan, the Support for Learning and English as an Additional Language (EAL). Teachers work closely with pupils to ensure that they have the support which they require.
Provision for Pupils with Additional Support Needs
The Support for Learning Department comprises four full time staff, (two SfL teachers and two EAL teachers) plus a full time teaching assistant, a part time Math’s support teacher and another teacher who fulfils a role as a teaching assistant as well as teaching PE.
The SfL department is able to support pupils with a range of difficulties, most often those of a dyslexic nature with difficulties in spelling, writing and reading.
All new pupils to the school are screened using the GLS online Dyslexia Screening Test. Pupils arriving with Additional Support Needs on record will meet with Mrs Streatfeild-James before the first term in order to discuss particular issues and needs. This is very beneficial in allowing a smooth transition into the school.
In Riley House support is provided through in class support from the TA as well as through withdrawal from languages. Pupils maybe withdrawn from Latin for two periods a week, French for four lessons a week or Latin and French for six lessons per week. The number of lessons is dependent on the level of need.
In the Senior School pupils are usually withdrawn from Languages but may be withdrawn from other subjects where appropriate. Third form might attend up to six lessons, Fourth and Fifth form usually four to five lessons per week. In the Sixth Form pupils are allocated lessons from their Study Periods.
An Educational Psychologist regularly visits the school to test pupils requiring assessments for external exams in order to have extra time, a reader and/or scribe or use of IT. There is a charge for these assessments.
Pupils in SfL are encouraged to use technology wherever possible in order to be independent. Pupils use iPads, laptops, Reading Pens, Live-Scribe pens (Sixth form) and are encouraged to make use of the wide range of software available; Dragon Speech to Text, Read and Write Gold etc. An emphasis is placed on the importance of learning touch typing skills. Pupils in the senior school are encouraged to have a laptop or iPad/Tablet (preferably with a keyboard) to use in lessons and for prep.
Kate Streatfeild-James BA, PGCE, Dip SpLD, Adv. Dip
In EAL we provide individual and flexible support for pupils whose first language is not English. We work closely with subject teachers and tutors in order to help each pupil achieve the best possible results in their chosen subjects and to aid their integration into the School and the wider community. In addition, we offer a range of certified English courses as well as the new Higher ESOL.
On arrival, pupils whose native language is not English will be assigned a ‘buddy’ in their House who will help them to settle in. As soon as possible, they will be referred to the EAL department where we assess their level of English and discuss various course options. Depending on their level and timetable, pupils are then put into small groups or receive one-to-one lessons.
For our junior pupils, settling into Riley House is our first priority. Learning ‘survival’ vocabulary and understanding the daily routine and school rules is only a first step. We liaise very closely with subject teachers and usually accompany a new pupil to some lessons for the first week until he/she has gained enough confidence to go without us.