A school is giving its students a unique opportunity to gain extra GCSEs in their home languages.
The diverse community surrounding Royal Docks Academy means students come from a wide variety of backgrounds, with many having English as an additional language.
Rather than seeing language as a barrier, the school gives students the opportunity to earn an extra qualification.
Last summer, 50 students took exams in their home language, with 88 per cent achieving A* to C grades and 74 per cent securing the top grades of A* and A.
Spencer Russell, in charge of community learning, said: “We are equipping students with extra GCSE qualifications. It particularly benefits those who join the school mid phase who have no or little English to still achieve grades. They are able to achieve a good grade to put onto their college or next steps applications. Those achievements are to be celebrated.
“It is about making sure that every child matters.”
Students are assessed and interviewed in Year 9 with a view to putting them forward for their GCSE exams in Year 10.
A total of 18 per cent of the whole current Year 10 group will secure an additional GCSE qualification in their home language a year early.
They have just completed their mock exams in a range of different languages – Bengali, French, German, Italian, Polish, Urdu, Chinese, Russian, Persian, Portuguese and Turkish.
John Blaney, executive headteacher, said: “This really is a further sign that, within the Trust, we value diversity. Languages have always been important to us and so it is essential we have the opportunity to recognise our fantastic multi-lingual children. What better way to recognise this than with a GCSE in their home language.”