Supporting students from non-English speaking backgrounds

At Underdale High School we are committed to supporting students from non-English backgrounds and offer:


  • The subject English as a an Additional Language or Dialect (EAL) for students from Years 8 – 12
  • EAL support in mainstream subjects in all year levels
  • Bilingual Student Support Officers
  • Intensive Literacy classes Years 8 – 11


Determination of Eligibility for English as an Additional Language

The SACE curriculum pattern requires all students to enrol – and achieve a satisfactory standard – in 2 units of English at Stage 1 level.


EAL is offered as an ALTERNATIVE for those students for whom English is not their first language and who satisfy at least two (2) of the eligibility criteria outlined below.

These are:


  • English is not their first language
  • A significant part of their formal education has not been in English
  • Knowledge and experience in the English language is restricted
  • Formal education has been interrupted
  • Have had no more than 5 years of full time schooling in English
  • Any restriction in English language proficiency can be verified

Stage 1 and 2 EAL

Students who complete 20 credits of Stage 1 EAL with a C grade or better will meet the literacy requirement of the SACE.


At Stage 2 level there are two options of EAL available: English as an Additional Language and Essential English (EAL). Students who wish to undertake English as an Additional Language must be recommended by their Stage 1 EAL teacher.


Students at Stage 2 who have not completed Stage 1 EAL are still eligible to select Stage 2 English as an Additional Language only if they satisfy the eligibility criteria.