Skip to content ↓

About Consilium

Consilium Academies is a multi-academy Trust working across the North of England. It has nine academy schools located in Yorkshire, the North West, and the North East. Consilium is dedicated to enriching lives and inspiring ambitions for both students and colleagues.

English as an Additional Language

What is EAL?

There are more than one million learners in UK schools, who speak English as an additional language (EAL). At Thornhill Academy, we have students in every year group who are in this EAL group. Our EAL page is designed to provide information and support to our EAL pupils and their families.

At Thornhill Academy we provide students, whose English is not their first language, a bilingual dictionary for them to use in class. Teachers are made aware of individual student needs and given support and guidance so they can support students in lesson. Students will also be assessed to work out their level and competency in English, before going into lessons, through a robust induction.

Our EAL students come from many different backgrounds and here at Thornhill we have EAL students whose first language includes Arabic, Kurdish, Malayalam, Bengali and Punjabi, creating an inclusive and culturally diverse school community.

Below are some of the areas we are developing to support EAL pupils and their families:

  • Important booklets produced by the school will be made available in different languages. 
  • Supporting parents / carers of EAL learners through helping them understand how our school education system works and how to support their child’s education at home.

We consider our EAL learners to be an asset to our school and the local community. They bring a new dimension to our school community, by sharing their experiences it helps their peers understand more about diverse cultures and other people’s points of view.

Our support links can help families find out how to access financial help and advice; how to register with a doctor and dentist; provide details for various charities and how parents can access everyday technology such as Google Translate and Immersive Reader to help pupils and parents translate a range of vital information.

Immersive Reader 

What is immersive reader?

Immersive Reader re-formats text so that it is accessible to all. It also reads out text at a pace that suits the user, and it can be changed into your home language.

How do I turn it on?

In Teams and Outlook, look for the Immersive Reader icon (As pictured above. Open book with speaker). In Word Online & Word 365 click view > Immersive Reader. You can also search for Immersive Reader when you see the magnifying glass icon.

What are the features?

The immersive reader can:

  • Translate the text to your home language.
  • Read text aloud, in your home language.

Plus, it can also

  • Use focus mode to hide all but the sentence you need.
  • Highlight syllables.
  • Allow you to change the background colour and text colour.
  • Allow you to change the text spacing and layout.

How do you use immersive reader to translate?

  1. Choose the review tab at the top of the word document.
  2. Select language and translate.
  3. Choose the language you would like to translate “To”.
  4. Press the translate button and a new document will open.

General Help 

DAR volunteers work alongside refugees and asylum seekers as they rebuild their lives in Darlington and the Northeast of England. They help with learning the language, completing forms, applying for schools, and help to find doctors and dentists.

North of England Refugee Service (NERS)

Citizens Advice aim to provide people with advice for the problems they face and to improve the policies and practices that affect people’s lives. They provide free, independent, confidential, and impartial advice to everyone on their rights and responsibilities. We value diversity, promote equality and challenge discrimination.


Information on Sunderland City Council services including bins, Council Tax, benefits, libraries, business and more.

The Foodbank is a place where anyone who finds themselves in times of hardship can visit and receive an emergency bag of food. You will always be made to feel welcome and on your first visit, you can enjoy a nice hot drink with some biscuits while we take a few details from you.

  1. Additional Educational Support

The EAL Hub aims to enable EAL and SEN learners to learn in the mainstream classroom as much as possible via structured support and differentiation.



The Bell Foundation works with parents to support the learning of pupils who use EAL: Guidance for schools.





Excellent websites for learning English – suitable for all ages.


Discover expert advice, educational resources and free eBooks to support children’s learning at primary school and at home, from Oxford University Press.




To read our EAL Policy, please click the link below.