Second Language Learners in International Schools

Paperback / softback, 290 pages, 234 mm x 156 mm
13 Dec 2018
Trentham Books

Price: £25.99

By 2020 it is estimated that there will be more than ten thousand international schools educating five million students. Native speakers of English, the language of instruction in 90 per cent of these schools, will be in the minority.

The learning needs of second language learners in national education systems differ fundamentally from those in the international community. This book argues that second language learners in international schools are better provided for within models of instruction that do not assimilate to any political system; where motivation can come from areas other than wanting to belong to a specific culture; and where students can develop all their languages equitably.

The authors trace the theories underpinning second language learning programmes in international schools and delve into the complexities of teacher relationships and the influence of curriculum agencies on second language learning. Through case studies and vignettes, they argue for establishing a department of Professional English as a Second Language at the centre of the academic life in each school, whose staff will build on the widely acknowledged potential of second language learners and enhance their capabilities in all their languages.

  • Maurice Carder

    Maurice Carder is the former head of the ESL & Mother Tongue Department at the Vienna International School.

  • Patricia Mertin

    Patricia Mertin is former head of the ESL Department at the International School, Düsseldorf.

  • Sarah Porter

    Sarah Porter is EAL Co-ordinator at the British School of Bucharest.

CONTENTS: Foreword, by Virginia Collier; PART 1: INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS AND INFLUENCES ON THEIR PROVISION FOR SECOND LANGUAGE STUDENTS; Chapter 1. What second language learners bring to international schools, by Patricia Mertin; Chapter 2. Characterization of the international school clientele in language matters; Chapter 3. ESL students and their requirements in international schools: The encroaching politicization of ESL and MT provision; PART 2: BILINGUALISM AND SECOND LANGUAGE ACQUISITION; Chapter 4. How the fields of bilingualism and SLA can guide good practice for viable SL models in international schools; PART 3: THE HUMAN FACTOR; Chapter 5. The reality of teacher relationships, their implications for teachers and pedagogy, and the consequences of a deficit model for SLLs; PART 4: THE ROLE OF EXTERNAL CURRICULUM AND ACCREDITATION BODIES; Chapter 6. The role of external bodies, such as the Council of International Schools and the International Baccalaureate, in international schools: The erosion of the acknowledgement of SLL needs and potential; PART 5: THE CURRENT SITUATION IN AN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL; Chapter 7. How one international school is implementing the model proposed in this book, by Sarah Porter; PART 6: CONSTRUCTIVE SOLUTIONS THAT BUILD CONSISTENTLY ON INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS’ LANGUAGE TRAJECTORIES; Chapter 8. Establishing a department in the secondary school as a ‘centre of expertise’ for all matters ESL and mother tongue; Chapter 9. The need for continuing professional development (CPD), by Patricia Mertin; Chapter 10. The importance of maintaining mother tongue development, by Patricia Mertin; Chapter 11. Advice and guidance for school leaders, teachers and parents; Chapter 12. The challenges ahead, by Maurice Carder and Patricia Mertin; Appendix: Websites for SLLs in international schools; References; Index.

'Reading your new book really helped me to understand the issues, to clarify a vision for my department to have the confidence to pursue it.'

Andreas Nicolaou, Head of ELL, International school of London

'Excellent read. I am putting a copy of his book in all 3 ISS Libraries.'

Alba Pincay-Clauss,

'I have the head of ESL ordering a few copies of this book for the dept at VIS & have written to intl school teacher / leader friends encouraging them to read it.'

Sabrina Wisak,

'As a former ESL teacher and workshop leader, I found myself nodding in agreement page after page of this important and well-researched book. The authors expose the truth that many international schools, unwittingly or even deliberately, disregard the crucial role that a strong, properly staffed ESL and mother tongue programme plays in promoting the language rights of all students and allowing access to the school’s curriculum to help nurture each student’s true potential. It is a compelling argument.'

Victor Ferreira, IBDP Coordinator, American School of The Hague

'This straightforward and ferociously honest study provides vital and attainable suggestions for creating an effective, inclusive ESL programme for international schools. A must-read for teachers and leaders whose goal is to set students up for future academic success.'

Melanie Sanchez,

'This is a great book, offering a clear vision. It gives international schools compelling ammunition to steer away from an ESL "support" model and create truly equitable multilingual schools in which ESL and MT centres of expertise provide complementary professional programmes for students, teachers and parents.'

Joris van den Bosch, Secondary EAL teacher, The British School of Brussels, Belgium