Mike Baker examines the role...
- Education Professionals
Monty is a new pupil at Claremont Primary School in Manchester's Moss Side district. The fact that Monty is a puppet doesn't bother the other pupils, who have recently arrived in the UK, and who think of him as one of them.
Monty is used by Ailsa Luty, the assistant head, as a way of putting pupils at ease when they make mistakes in speaking English. Monty, rather than the pupils, can get things wrong. He is black like most of them and his name has no cultural associations.
Initially intended for use with EAL pupils, Monty is now used throughout the school. Monty is not the only approach to inclusion the school uses. It has an enrichment policy designed to promote inclusion at all levels.
There are pupil translators and peer mediators as well as Gaadhitaan sessions, a Somalian word meaning "achievement", for parents and children, run by Mohamoud Affi, a bilingual instructor. In these sessions, parents learn how to help with homework and children learn about their culture.
Part of the series: School Matters