In September 2013, the school opened its first bilingual (French and English) class in Reception. This will move throughout the school so that eventually each year group will have one bilingual class in addition to the traditional class. All children in the school will benefit from the increased exposure to another language and it will give children in the bilingual class the unique opportunity to learn in and about another language whilst still meeting the demands of the EYFS/ National Curriculum and striving for high standards and progress in their learning.
Staff in the bilingual stream will be a mixture of both fluent and native French speakers and there will be carefully planned discrete and integrated opportunities for cultural awareness as well as linguistic development. Children benefit from links with French speaking countries and other bilingual provision in the local area.
There are certain parts of the timetable which we commit to consistently teaching in English; we recognise the importance of high quality phonics teaching, and so ‘letters and sounds’ phonics sessions, as well as guided reading/ writing activities will be in English during the Foundation Stage. During KS1 children will begin formalised French reading and writing learning, which builds on good practice seen in other bilingual settings.