Language Policy


Responsibility for Policy Implementation:



Principal (Secondary)



Relevant to:




All Han Academy staff, students and parents




Approved by:







Effective from:



06 June 2019



Next Review Date:



05 June 2020






This policy aims at creating a harmonious learning and teaching environment at Han Academy (hereinafter, the School) as a foundational condition for development and implementation of learning the curricula, meeting the students' learning needs and strengthening their character and multi-cultural understanding.


  1. Policy philosophy


1.1 Following the core principle that language is the key to all learning, all teachers of the School are language teachers and are expected to teach and communicate with students in the language of instruction of respective subjects. 


1.2 Language learning at the School refers not only to learning of a specific language, but it also includes all activities around the language learning process, including those activities that promote the use of languages in academic programme of the School, including in extra-curriculum activities (ECAs). Through language, the school community acquires an ability to think and to learn, to develop social skills and values, and to acquire knowledge. 


1.3 Language learning is an opportunity provided by the School to all its students, with consideration of inclusive education needs, if any. The School works to further develop its learning environment and conditions in order to enable all its students with various cultural-linguistic background to respect and learn their mother tongue and other language(s). 


  1. Language learning


2.1 The School accommodates different learning styles with differentiated instruction according to individual needs of students, aimed to shape students' complete learner profile.


2.2 All students at the School are to be provided with an opportunity to learn at least two languages. 


2.3 Students vary in their ability to learn a language; some will achieve functional proficiency in the target language while others will become truly bilingual or multilingual. The acquisition of language must be seen as a continuum, along which each individual student progresses at his or her own speed to reach fluency and accuracy.


2.4 The languages of instruction at the School are Chinese and English. 


2.5 Taking into consideration the cultural focus of the School, Chinese language is offered on a regularly taught basis to all students at the School.


2.6 The School encourages and supports students to learn their mother tongue. In case it is not Chinese or English, various events can be organised to support learning and promotion of a particular language and culture at the School. 


2.7 Chinese and English, as the main languages of the School, shall be used in the whole teaching process and communication with students, with exception of communication in the third language taught at the School. 


2.8 English has been selected as the language of instruction of IB Diploma Programme at the School. The use of languages in the Programme is regulated by respective IB standards and documents. 


  1. Language learning support


3.1 All teachers of the School shall possess language skills (Chinese and/or English) suitable to teach respective academic subjects. 


3.2 All administrators, librarians and other School staff shall possess English language skills at a level that can support students at the School in their learning process, and that no student can be in a disadvantageous position while communicating in English. 


3.3 Official communication between the School and students, their parents and/or guardians is conducted in Chinese and English. In case there is a translation-caused misinterpretation, the English version prevails.  


3.4 The School encourages teachers to develop their language skills, including further improvement of teachers' English language skills. The expertise of English language teachers, led by the Director of English Curriculum, as a valuable resource, can be applied to provide necessary support in the process. 


3.5 The School's English language teachers, led by the Director of English Curriculum, are to provide the School, including in its assessment process, with technical support related to the language profile, including assistance in developing subject formative and summative assessment components. 


  1. Language admission standards and evaluation of language teaching


4.1 All applicants, who have applied for admission to the School, in addition to other assessment components, are required to have their Chinese and English language skills assessed.


4.2 The School conducts assessment of language courses, and performance of students in all the languages taught at the School is subject to formal assessment. Review of the Chinese and English curricula and assessment strategies, including examinations, is discussed and undertaken within the Chinese and English departments, respectively.


  1. Review of the Policy


5.1 The Policy shall be reviewed at least once per academic year, with the involvement of the School's leadership and subject (including language) teachers and with consideration of the input from students, their parents/guardians, and the broader school community.


5.2 The overall coordination of the review exercise is conducted by the Principal or, as assigned, Vice Principal of the School, and the reviewed policy enters into force after being approved by the Principal.