Support for Learning (SfL)
The Support for Learning Department sits within the heart of the school community, providing guidance to pupils and teaching staff alike. Nurturing curiosity and a love of learning are crucial for developing enquiring minds and lifelong learning. In SfL the goal is to work closely with pupils to support their individual needs enabling them to flourish academically throughout their time at KA.
Led by Lorna Harkins, the department of three teachers and a professional tutor offers consultation, assessment and on-going support to all our pupils from 4 – 18. They provide both short and long-term support to pupils from J1 – S6 and cover a huge range of learning needs from pupils with dyslexia and dyscalculia to those who need short term support in specific areas academically, socially or emotionally.
…close partnership with the pupil, the parents and teaching staff to provide a learning environment where the child may achieve his or her potential and find success within the context of a broad, stimulating and demanding school environment.
We provide support through consultancy, cooperative teaching, one-to-one sessions and additional assessment arrangements for SQA exams. Further support is provided through a drop in sessions available to all Kelvinside pupils. Parents are also welcome to drop in during these times to speak to our staff.
Wherever there are needs which might not otherwise be met, special arrangements may be put in place. The aim is to do this in close partnership with the pupil, the parents and teaching staff to provide a learning environment where the child may achieve his or her potential and find success within the context of a broad, stimulating and demanding school environment.
With regards learning difficulties, pre-emptive support is likely to be the main emphasis. Each pupil's emerging literacy skills are closely monitored through on-going review and formal testing, to allow early intervention with precisely targeted tuition and advice for teaching staff.
The complex and varied Senior School curriculum means that individual tuition may gradually give way to the development of alternative strategies - for example, tailored study skills advice, increased use of digital technology and the use of a reader/scribe.
At all stages of the school, we foster a positive attitude towards personal accountability, promoting pupil involvement in setting targets for learning and self-evaluation, encouraging pupils to utilise computer software and hardware to promote independent learning. We endeavour to provide appropriate and current forms of support to pupils as the demands of text-based work steadily increase through the school years towards SQA examinations, college, university and the workplace.
We find this encouragement and support allows pupils to improve their self-confidence, self-esteem and social skills as they grow into mature, confident and independent young people.
English as an Additional Language (EAL) provision
We welcome pupils from all parts of the world and it is important that they can take full advantage of the many opportunities available at KA. It is therefore of the upmost importance that pupils are able to communicate and express themselves effectively, whether in the classroom, on the sports field or in a social setting.
For our international students in need of additional support with English, we offer expert tuition in English as an Additional Language led by specialist teacher Julie Thomson.
Students learn in small classes until their standard of English is sufficient to equip them to participate fully in all lessons. EAL lessons often take place when other students are studying another modern language.
Our strong preference is for our international students to have a good basic understanding of English before joining KA. We do consider Junior School applications from capable pupils with little knowledge of the language. These pupils receive intensive courses to enable them to integrate as quickly as possible into the school, both socially and academically.
Entrance into universities in English-speaking countries requires a recognised qualification in English such as the IELTS examination. We can prepare overseas students for this examination.