About the EAL Programme

The English as an Additional Language (EAL) Programme continues to build on lessons learnt from commissioned research, funded projects, experience and expertise in order to provide tools, resources, thought leadership and professional development opportunities for those supporting learners who use EAL.

The EAL Programme

There are more than 1.7 million pupils in state-funded primary and secondary schools in England who use EAL. In 2022/2023, 22% of primary pupils and 18.1% of secondary school pupils use EAL.

All children, including those who use English as an Additional Language, should have the opportunity to fully access the curriculum and fulfil their potential. However, despite research evidence that highlights the crucial importance of proficiency in English as a key predictor of educational outcomes, there is still no national agreement on how teachers can support pupils to develop proficiency in English alongside curriculum learning, and the EAL training for school staff is inconsistent.

Ensuring pupils’ full accessibility to a high-quality and ambitious curriculum means schools need to establish appropriate systems and structures to ensure any learners at risk of falling behind get the support they need. The Foundation’s EAL Programme is designed to provide schools with the assets they need to achieve this.

Programme reach and impact during 2022:

  • 56,340 downloads of EAL resources; 
  • 26,464 education professionals engaged;
  • Welsh Government recommended the Assessment Framework to schools as part of its statutory guidance;
  • The Government of Jersey has formally adopted the Framework;
  • 95% recommendation rate for training.

Theory of Change

The EAL Programme’s Theory of Change has been developed by the Foundation in consultation with key stakeholders and informed by the latest research.

EAL Programme objectives

Objective 1

Capacity building

To develop activity that improves the educational outcomes of children who use EAL by building capacity and knowledge across the education sector

School partners

  • Luton First Teaching School Alliance
  • Prince Albert Community Trust
  • Connect Teaching School Alliance
  • Quality First Education
  • Roehampton University
Objective 2

Developing and evaluating models of good practice

To support schools and other organisations in the UK that work directly with children who use EAL. To work with partners to develop, trial and evaluate different models to find out what works to improve disadvantaged EAL learners’ attainment, and help them share best practice with others.

Charity and organisation partners

  • National Deaf Children’s Society
  • Education Endowment Foundation
Objective 3

Thought leadership

To undertake research to learn more about the needs and experiences of children who use EAL, and what impacts on their achievement. To fund research and help researchers share what they find with others, so that it can inform future research, policy and practice.

Research and university partners

  • Education Endowment Foundation
  • King’s College London
  • Unbound Philanthropy
  • University of Oxford

Professional Development

The Foundation has a national calendar of face-to-face, online and blended professional development courses to develop the expertise and confidence of school practitioners so they can provide impactful support for learners who use EAL. The calendar includes a wide range of high-quality, evidence-informed, professional development courses for school practitioners run by the Foundation and the national network of Centres of Expertise.

Centres of Expertise

Sustainable EAL provision in schools is developed through working in partnership with a network of Centres of Expertise who train and support schools across their region. Centres are based in areas of high need, usually where there are significant numbers of EAL learners and limited access to existing EAL training and support.

There is an excellent balance of theory, evidence and practical advice. It's exactly what we're looking for. .... Having explored your website in detail, I must say that it's a great resource and teachers on the programme will be sure to benefit greatly from being introduced to it. Thank you again for such a quality contribution.


A wide range of teaching and learning resources help schools effectively assess and enable learners who use EAL to fully access the curriculum and fulfill their potential.


Research is commissioned to develop an understanding of the factors that impact on the outcomes and attainment for pupils who use EAL. The research offers insights and recommendations for various aspects of EAL policy, professional development and classroom practice; from informing whole school approaches to EAL assessment to EAL provision in Initial Teacher Education (ITE) and effective CPD interventions for practitioners.

EAL Assessment

These practical resources enhance EAL provision in schools and include the award-winning EAL Assessment Framework for Schools with digital EAL Assessment Tracker.

Work with Us

Partnerships include research partners to develop and inform the EAL Programme, and education-based partners to run the Language for Results Programme.

Our partners

Looking for something else?

The EAL Programme seeks to improve the educational outcomes of disadvantaged children in the UK who have English as an Additional Language, in order to benefit the individual child and society as a whole.