A clear, defined English language Policy, supported by all staff, students and their parents/guardians, will improve communication among all members of the School community, facilitate a stronger learning environment, and will contribute to raising academic standards at the school.
The school aims to be a school that prepares its students for: a) post-secondary education at reputable institutions of higher learning; b) careers that require fluency in English; and c) positions of responsibility in their own country or abroad. Therefore, since strong language skills are the key to success in virtually every field, the School Language Policy will define the role of languages at the school, with the goal of strengthening our students’ language skills at every level.
It is essential that high standards for English language use are maintained, in order to ensure that academic standards remain high and the school fulfills the DWPS mission of internationalism.
The importance of acquiring English language skills
English is the de facto language for business, the sciences, academia, and international communication. Thus, in order to prepare our students for higher education and future careers, and reflecting our mission as an international school, English is the primary language of instruction and communication at the school. In this day and age, mere classroom instruction in English is not sufficient. Our students need to be immersed in an English-speaking environment, as much as possible, through the use of English both in and out of the classroom.
The importance of acquiring mother tongue language skills
It is a fact that students who have strong language skills in the native, or first language, will be successful in learning second or third languages. Since all students at the school speak English as a second language, it is important that the Hindi and English teachers collaborate and support each other to ensure that pupils develop their skills in both languages.
The importance of acquiring skills in other languages
As the school grows, and the student body and staff become more diverse, we must recognize the importance of other languages (not Hindi or English). In the future, it is possible that the school need to make provisions to provide its students with opportunities to study other languages in-depth.
English will be the form of communication:
- In all classrooms except in Hindi or other language classes where appropriate, or when by necessity translation is required, at the teacher’s discretion.
- For all activities, sports (except on the playing field), residential common areas, library , computer lab, on buses, on official school outings and on the playground during directed activities.
- When students interact with all teachers and staff during school hours and while conducting official school business (except in the case of an emergency, if lack of English limits an immediate intervention or help).
- All staff will be expected to use English during school hours when interacting with students, except in non-English language classes and as necessary in after-school hours.
- The whole School community will agree with these standards and everyone will strive to ensure that they are maintained throughout the year.
- Parents, guardians and students will be informed of the Language Policy during the admissions process, students will be reminded again at the beginning of school term.
- Other languages will be the primary form of communication only in non-English language classes (e.g. Hindi).
- Students and staff will be encouraged to study and build their English language skills through reading and other exposure to English language.
- Parents/guardians will be provided with: information on the language learning process, the school’s expectations in terms of English language development for each student, the need for strong English language skills in order to be successful academically according to curriculum requirements and information on how they can support their students. This can be done during inter active sessions between the Principal and parents.
The Language Policy will serve the needs of our students by:
- Setting a high standard for language teaching and emphasizing the importance of language skills across all subjects.
- Emphasizing that all teachers and staff need to encourage and support the use of English, not only the English teacher.
- Providing opportunities that will challenge students’ language skills, such as spelling bees, writing competitions, drama activities, musical events (singing), and through honor or merit awards for excellence in English.
- Encouraging and guiding students towards participation in language-based activities, i.e. reading, word games/puzzles, listening to music in English, watching films/cartoons in English.
- Creating a “buddy” system for students with English language skills below grade level, by pairing them with a student in their class with more developed language
- Asking parents and guardians to accept and support the Language Policy and by asking them to contribute actively to their students’ English language learning.
- Assessing students’ English language skills upon admission and providing appropriate support. Academic achievement and goal-setting will be encouraged by carrying out regular language assessment tests. Students who make exceptional progress will be recognized.
- Providing regular, easy-to-understand language assessment reports to parents.
- Holding regular meetings to discuss language issues and working collaboratively to Am& ensure that all students’ language needs are being me