English Out There Policy

A systematic effort is made at ELC to maximise our students’ exposure to native speakers outside the classroom. All our staff are encouraged to go ‘the extra mile’ to encourage and assist students to be in contact with the local community. We are helped by the fact that there are only a few language schools in Bristol, we have caring homestay families, who have been well briefed about integrating their students, and we have a very special relationship with the university.

On arrival, during the welcome talks, we highlight the benefits of integrating with local people. We also follow up during the regular student/teacher interviews. We mention the following:

  • For those staying in homestays we explain how to make the most out of staying with British families.
  • During the academic year our students are able to join the clubs and the societies of the University. There are over 300, and joining them is an excellent way for our students to make local friends.
  • We maintain an up-to-date list of other local clubs which our students might be interested in joining. (athletics clubs, brass bands, the Bristol operatic society etc.)
  • If our students pay a one-off fee of £10, they can then use the Clifton College gym and swimming pool free of charge.
  • The local churches, temples, synagogues and mosques encourage our students to attend and join in with social events.
  • Out of classroom activities are regularly arranged by our teachers including visits to the Courts, photo-trails and local surveys.
  • We occasionally arrange for guest speakers to come in and speak to our students. Visitors have included the University of Bristol, a careers adviser, a local author and a foley artist.
  • As part of the social programme, depending on demand, we can arrange salsa classes with local people, pub quizzes, cookery classes and theatre visits. We also always take advantage of local events which students can join, e.g. street parties, St Paul’s Carnival, the Harbour festival, Upfest street art festival, etc.
  • Now, unfortunately, only students with a Tier 5 visa can work in the UK. These visas are available for students from Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan. Typically, students start work after they have completed their course at ELC.
  • On demand, we run a 1-hour jobs club on Wednesdays after school, during which we help students prepare their CVs and we show them how to contact and arrange interviews with local shops, restaurants and companies and we give them information about the local job centre and guidance on how to obtain a National Insurance Number.
  • February 2023