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Ethnic minority achievement service
Curriculum and Language Access Service
The Curriculum and Language Access Service (CLAS) is a local authority Ethnic Minority Achievement (EMA) service which works with schools to develop effective provision for minority ethnic and English as an additional language (EAL) learners..
CLAS has the following mission statement:
"The Curriculum and Language Access Service is committed to raising the achievement and expectations of minority ethnic pupils, by working in partnership to ensure equality of opportunity in Education."
The service includes:
- EMA consultants and leading teachers;
- Bilingual language assistants and support workers;
- specialist teachers of English as an additional language; and
- teachers and tutors of community languages.
CLAS is funded through the DSG, with funding formerly called the Ethnic Minority Achievement Grant. Our staff work with schools across the authority, as part of the School Improvement Service, to develop provision to promote the educational achievement of pupils with EAL, refugees, asylum seekers and ethnic minority pupils at risk of underachieving. However, all groups of children benefit from specialist EAL expertise in schools.
By working with schools, CLAS staff:
- support schools in developing effective self-evaluation processes, coordinating provision for EAL, reviewing current practice and developing teaching and learning approaches which benefit pupils from all language backgrounds;
- work in the classroom in partnership with mainstream teachers and assistants;
- provide CPD to develop effective EAL coordination and practice in schools;
- plan with school colleagues to make sure pupils have full access to the curriculum;
- help to develop a learning culture where having more than one language is valued;
- evaluate pupil progress regularly to make sure support is given effectively;
- work with schools to develop partnerships with parents by contacting parents and carers and by making home visits to discuss pupil progress and how parents can get involved;
- develop resources to use in school and at home, such as dual language signs and posters, resource packs and translated documents;
- support schools in meeting the cultural, language and religious needs of their pupils;
- support pupils taking GCSEs in community languages.
Through specific initiatives the service will:
- support schools to promote equalities and cohesion, for example, Show Racism the Red Card competition, Who Do We Think We Are? week activities and competition, Refugee Week activities;
- work with asylum seekers to make sure they have access to services;
- provide CPD for staff in schools on promoting cultural diversity, supporting pupils with EAL and working with asylum seekers;
- co-ordinate a postgraduate certificate in Bilingualism in Education in partnership with NASSEA and the University of Birmingham to develop specialist teachers' skills in working with EAL learners;
- develop accredited CPD on EAL teaching and learning for mainstream teachers and assistants in partnership with Edge Hill University.
The CLAS newsletter is produced annually and provides information about EMA work and projects that are being delivered by CLAS in partnership with schools in the borough for children and young people. The newsletter is distributed to all the maintained schools in Bury and across a broad range of agencies.
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