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Armidale Secondary College

Armidale Secondary College

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Telephone02 6776 7400

Armidale Intensive English Centre

Armidale - Intensive English Centre 

Armidale Intensive English Centre (IEC) provides intensive English language instruction, orientation, welfare and settlement support to newly arrived high school aged migrant, refugee and international students between the ages of 11-18. 

The IEC is situated in the grounds of Armidale Secondary College and provides high school preparation support for students from diverse language backgrounds. 

Intensive English tuition is provided through the Intensive English Program Curriculum Framework (IEPCF) as well as the key subject learning areas, including mathematics, science, HSIE, computer studies, PDHPE and Sport. The main focus is the development of specific language skills and vocabulary to enable students to access the high school curriculum leading to academic success. Most newly arrived students study in the specialised learning environment for approximately 30-40 weeks, while most international students study for approximately 20 weeks.

Following assessment by trained staff, students are classified as either regular or special needs and placed in classes according to their English language level. The IEC places students in Foundation, Level 1, Level 2 or Level 3 classes and regularly assesses students’ language development each term. 

Regular students are generally students who have experienced continuous schooling prior to migration or who may have studied English in their country of origin. Most regular students will transfer to high school after 20 weeks at the IEC. The maximum number of students in a regular class is 18. 

Special needs students are those who experience significant disadvantage in their initial learning of English and literacy due to factors such as disrupted previous education, physical disability, learning difficulty or trauma resulting from war or displacement. The maximum number of students in a special needs class is 10. 

Every term, the vast majority of IEC students transition to Armidale Secondary College. Older students will generally transition to TAFE courses, such as the AMEP program or into employment in the community. The IEC has established close links with Armidale TAFE and The University of New England and a trained careers advisor is available for any students needing further careers advice. 

Their educational needs are supported by highly trained and expert teaching staff through the delivery of best practices in English as an Additional Language (EAL/D) pedagogy and the principles of high challenge, high support, curriculum differentiation, scaffolding, joint construction, explicit teaching, message abundancy and visual literacy

Our students are taught how to succeed in the Australian education system, as it can often differ greatly from any previous learning experiences. Our students are additionally supported by Student Learning Support Officers (SLSO’s) and where possible in language. 

Bilingual SLSO’ support student learning and communication within and outside the classroom on a daily basis. 

Students’ emotional needs, including building a sense of belonging, acceptance, safety, trust, and responsibility are catered for by our highly trained school counsellors and administration manager. The IEC provides First Aid where possible. Students are further supported by the NSW Refugee Health Nurse program, our weekly Activities Program, aimed at assisting with adjustment and settlement as well as the Settling In Program, which is targeted and delivered by the school counsellor. 

The IEC works very closely with STARTTS, the NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors, to further provide emotional support and additional individual counselling to students and their families. The IEC combines with community and government agencies to collaboratively deliver quality wellbeing, healthy lifestyle, creative & performing arts, sport, food technology and literacy programs for newly arrived students to support their social needs. These programs are delivered by external organisations and agencies such as Creating Chances, Football United, University of New England, Armidale PCYC, NSW TAFE, SSI and NSS

Excursions take place once a term for most students and are also an essential component of the IEC’s social, educational and emotional support program. The IEC recognises that parent involvement is crucial to student success and, as such, parents are encouraged to participate in their child’s learning and to communicate with the staff when needed. We look forward to supporting your child through their language and education journey. 

Please contact the Head Teacher IEC, Carole McKinney on 02 6776 7475 for further information. 

Armidale Intensive English Centre 

182 Butler Street, Armidale NSW 2350 

Telephone: (02) 6776 7475