Albanian schools

The Project aims to:

• Improve children’s language and literacy skills in Albanian

• Improve children’s attainment in their mainstream school

• Improve parent/child communication within the familyalbanian School

• Improve parent/teacher communication

• Raise awareness of Albanian culture in the school and  community

We are passionate about our children’s educational success. We believe that promoting a positive Albanian identity and teaching our children the Albanian language will not only build their self-esteem and confidence, develop their literacy and learning and improve their attainment in mainstream school, but that it will also improve their relationship with their own family and community.

We believe that our parents play a key role in the education and progress of their children so we use a range of proven methods to engage parents in their children’s learning and get involved in mainstream school. By enabling teachers to better understand our Albanian culture we also enable schools to effectively accelerate our children’s learning .

We work in partnership with mainstream school partners  in five London boroughs: Newham, Barking and Dagenham, Redbridge, Enfield and Haringey.

The schools we work with include Mayfield School, Gascoigne School, Cleveland School
Gladsmore Community School, Churchfield School, Bonds Green School and St Thomas of Cannterbury Primary School. They all provide their establishments for free as venues for our classes.

We provide:

• Albanian language teaching to Albanian-speaking children,

• Albanian awareness clubs at school for all the pupils

• Training to support teachers’ continuing professional development on how to work with Albanian-speaking pupils and parent

• Whole-school assemblies tailored to the needs of the school, for example on the experiences of refugees, or Albanian music, dance and culture.
You can see the timetable information for our Albanian schools.

How well do we do?

Due to the work of our school partners and also to the support we have had from a number of funders, especially, Big Lottery Fund , A4E Connecting Communities Plus, Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Help a London Child, and The  Mercres our Albanian Schools have experienced considerable success. A comprehensive evaluation of our work has been conducted by an expert in the field. This report is informing our development planning.

The national press have also reported on the success of our work.

Please see the calendar below for the timetable of Albanian classes.

What do the children say?

Albanian school2

This is what Nafjola, a 13 years old had to say:

When I started the school I was very lonely, I couldn’t speak the language and Mum was going through a very tough time. It was my teacher that referred Mum to Shpresa . She needed help and at Shpresa the people were very friendly, spoke Albanian, knew where to get help for us and accompanied us as well. I started to join different clubs and really liked it, making lots of new friends. We had shows where I performed and it really increased my confidence, as my English was improving and I started to be more confident in school as well. Now I have moved to the youth project and we run our own activities and shows which is great. I am in the top set in school and I have great ambition for the future. My Mum is now working as classroom assistant.’ (Nafjola, 13 yrs old)”

What do teachers say?

Catherine, a teacher at Christ Church School in Redbridg, noticed the change:

I felt a great sense of achievement working with the group - they were so proud to put on traditional costumes and perform. The children in school who watched the performance were very impressed, and had more respect for those pupils after the event. It has had a big impact on the children’s self-esteem and pride in their cultural heritage. This year  several friends of the Albanian pupils have asked to join the club - it now has a higher status. The children are proud to be able to speak Albanian, which is great because so often peer pressure takes over and so many parents say their children will only speak to them in English once they start school. I was delighted when so many family members turned up laden with food for the end of term party- it felt like a real community event, and the parents were so pleased with what had taken place. It has given the parents an opportunity to get to know each other better too.’ (Catherine - teacher at Christ Church School, Redbridge)"

 

Shpresa's Supplementary School Toolkit Videos

(click on links or thumbnails to watch)

Gascoigne School, Barking

 

 

 

St Thomas Primary School, Hammersmith

 

Mayfield School, Dagenham

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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