Spalding headteachers refute a claim that migrant classmates hold back British born children

St Pauls head Kira Nicholls pictured with pupils last year. SG110315-108TW
St Pauls head Kira Nicholls pictured with pupils last year. SG110315-108TW
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Respected Spalding headteachers refute a claim that British-born children are being held back by classmates who speak foreign languages.

The claim came from Campaign for Real Education chairman Chris McGovern, who says “most migrant children are highly motivated and end up ahead of the British working class”.

Kira Nicholls, headteacher at St Paul’s Community Primary School, said: “British-born children aren’t being held back by the range of ethnicities within our schools.

“There is a perception that this is the case but good teaching differentiates pupils’ learning and therefore pupils’ needs can be met, no matter what those needs are.

“In my experience, children who have English as an additional language often make rapid progress when they have been immersed in the English language for a short period of time. They are often incredibly adaptable and really want to do their best. I believe that the diversity we see in many of our school adds to their richness.”

St Norbert’s Roman Catholic Primary School was rated Ofsted outstanding last year when more than six out of ten pupils had English as an additional language, giving independent proof of a level playing field.

Head Louise Yarnell told the Guardian: “Regardless of nationality or languages spoken all pupils at St Norbert’s are nurtured to support each other spiritually, socially, morally, emotionally and in their education.”

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