Support for newly arrived EAL/D students and their teachers

Newly arrived students will often require initial intensive English language support, and ongoing English as an Additional Language/Dialect (EAL/D) support but this can’t be the only focus of schools upon their enrolment.

A coordinated approach to developing the necessary health and emotional supports required by students to settle into school routines should complement any learning support strategies implemented by schools. Fostering the development of trust and connection with students and their families will enhance feelings of safety, and when this is achieved, engagement in learning and improved student outcomes will follow.

Many migrant and refugee students settle into areas with experience in supporting newly arrived families, established structures and programs. However, a growing number are now being settled in other areas, and local schools may find themselves enrolling students requiring intensive English support without established EAL/D allocations or supports. Schools without the necessary levels of support should access the Department’s New Arrivals Program, which provides staffing or funding allocations to primary and rural/regional secondary schools to organise and deliver targeted English language programs to eligible newly arrived EAL/D students.

The program provides additional teaching support, for up to four terms. Funding is based on the number of eligible enrolments. When there are at least four eligible newly arrived students from a migrant or refugee background, these students may attract a teacher allocation and/or allocation for a school learning support officer (bilingual).

Where there are significant numbers of eligible newly arrived EAL/D students enrolling in rural/regional secondary schools, a short-term intensive English class teacher and school learning support officer (bilingual) staffing allocation may be provided. This targeted staffing allocation recognises the greater level of need of newly arrived secondary-aged EAL/D students as the academic demands of English increase in high school.

Further to these supports, Intensive English Centres and the Intensive English High School provide English tuition to newly arrived, year 6 and secondary students. For more information refer to the Multicultural Education New Arrivals Program Support page and the Intensive English Centre Guide.
Information about English programs delivered through TAFE can be accessed via the Adult Migrant Education Program (AMEP) website. The Department also offers professional learning opportunities, search multicultural education professional learning” at

Schools and TAFE colleges must have systems in place to support the complex needs of EAL/D and refugee students. When this is achieved, students don’t just learn, they thrive!