The results of the 2012 School Census published today show that the number of EAL learners in state schools in England has topped the million mark for the first time. The School Census, undertaken in January 2012 by the Department for Education, shows that one in six or 577,555 primary school pupils is an EAL learner. This rise is matched in the secondary figure which stands at 417,765, or 12.9% of the secondary school population. When pupils in special schools and pupil referral units are included, the total number of bilingual pupils in English state schools is 1,007,090.
As the number of academies and free schools rises, it is interesting to note the significant differences which are emerging between the percentages of bilingual pupils enrolled in these types of school compared to local authority maintained schools. The 1178 'converter academies' have a significantly smaller percentage of bilingual pupils than all other sorts of provision. In contrast, 'sponsored academies' have a higher percentage of bilingual pupils than other types of provision. This mirrors the position with pupils eligible for free school meals.
|School Type || ||Number of EAL learners ||Percentage of EAL learners || |
|Maintained Primary Schools || ||566,420 ||17.6% |
|Primary Converter Academies || ||10,725 || |
|Primary Sponsor Academies || ||240 || |
|Primary Free Schools || ||170 || |
|Total Primary || ||577,555 || |
|Maintained Secondary Schools || ||275,230 ||13.9% |
|Secondary Converter Academies || ||90,580 || |
|Secondary Sponsor Academies || ||51,865 || |
|Secondary Free Schools || ||90 || |
|Total Secondary || ||417,765 || |
In an unusual move, the DFE has departed from usual practice and has not published the local authority EAL data.This information is particularly relevant as local authorities get ready to include an EAL factor in their local funding formulas for school funding from April 2013.