Archdiocesan Application 2019
Our Lady Queen of Peace
Catholic Engineering College
Rayan is a Syrian refugee who joined our school in September 2017 (Year 7), just weeks after arriving in the country after a difficult journey and experience. Rayan did not speak any English and had not received any formal education.
West Lancashire Syrian Support Group contacted Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Engineering College to ask us if we were able to offer a school place for Rayan. Senior staff met with the family and their support workers, the day after they arrived in the country, and were more than happy to offer Rayan a place in our school. We organised for a free school uniform, a free bus pass and free school meals to ensure the transition ran as smoothly as possible.
Initially, Rayan found school overwhelming, she found it difficult to communicate and her social skills were limited. She spent her school day in our Inclusion Room, including break and lunch times. She struggled with the routines of school, however, with the support the school has given her, she quickly settled in and started to enjoy school life. The Inclusion team were able to put support in place to enable her to settle in quickly and very soon she started to enjoy school life. The school liaised with the Early Intervention Team to support the whole family in helping them settle in the Skelmersdale community. With the help of a translator and all the support they have been given, Rayan and her family started to enjoy life in Skelmersdale. To improve her social skills, she has been encouraged to attend extra-curricular PE and she has now joined the school netball team; this has improved both her confidence and social skills.
Rayan continues to receive 1-1 English tuition from an English as an Additional Language tutor. From not speaking any English when she first joined us, Rayan can now hold conversations in English confidently and comfortably. Her confidence has grown and she now accesses all lessons and spends very little time in Inclusion. Her social skills have developed and she now spends her break and lunchtimes with friends, accessing all aspects of school life.
If you ever meet her on the corridor, she always says hello with a confident smile.