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We welcome pupils from overseas for whom English is an additional language (EAL) and value the contribution you make to school life. Our pupils are a stimulating mix of talents and backgrounds. Our international community is large enough so you won’t feel isolated, but nonetheless small enough for us to remain a quintessential British boarding school.

Good English language support is crucial to the success of overseas pupils at Wells, and we are able to offer you a developed programme to suit you and your abilities, which enables you to flourish and reach your highest potential. We recognise that choosing a school far away from home is an exciting opportunity but a potentially daunting task. We hope our website will help answer your questions, but our admissions team are here to advise you on your options so please contact us on on 01749 834441 or [email protected], and we’ll be happy to help.

Our international programme is split into our EAL programme and our WISC Pre-GCSE and Pre-A Level programmes, which are detailed below. We will advise you when you apply as to where we feel you will be best suited, which we determine by your level of English and your year group.

EAL Programme

If your English is at an appropriate level, we recommend you join our main school on our EAL Programme. This programme starts with our complimentary 10 day International Preparatory Course so straightaway you have the strategies and techniques you need to help you quickly settle into a new life of study in the UK and know what to expect. We then create a tailor-made programme of language support for you, which we review each term, to complement the rest of your studies and activities to help enable you to flourish and reach your highest potential.

Otherwise, life is no different for an international pupil than for those from the UK – you will share the same boarding houses and co-curricular opportunities, and every pupil has access to the pastoral care they need.

Additional Benefits

  • Teachers within your mainstream classes will use strategies for differentiation to better support you.
  • You will have opportunities for subject specific support, usually in larger groups or seminar sessions, taught by English Language teaching specialists.

You will have access to consultations on an ad hoc basis for specific pieces of work and/or personal statement writing.

  • We can provide support in preparation for GCSE or A level examination in your native language (in cases where we can offer the examination) and for external examinations, such as IELTS, CPE, CAE, FCE, PET or IGCSE in English as a Second Language.
  • If required, you will receive explicit teaching of English as an Additional Language by English Language teaching specialists or subject-specific support in either small groups or one-to-one.

Wells International Study Centre (WISC)

WISC is the perfect starting place for overseas pupils (14-16 years old) who want to gain their first experience of a traditional British school education but need to improve their level of English before enrolling onto a mainstream programme of study. 

On WISC, you will have a programme concentrating on intensive English language development with grounding in vocabulary and language conventions for a range of academic subjects taught through Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL).

With our international reputation for music, we also can provide a highly specialised route for overseas music pupils who are looking to enter a music conservatoire in the future. Our aim is to prepare pupils with the knowledge, skills and cultural awareness they will need to succeed.


We offer a rolling programme taught in six blocks, which includes English as a Second Language, Maths, Science, Humanities, Literature, Cookery and PSHE. All of our pupils are fully integrated within our boarding houses and participate in some mainstream classes, including co-curricular sports and activities. We review each pupil’s individual progress each term, and facilitate their phased move onto our EAL programme once they are ready.

WISC Pre-A Level

We offer a one year programme designed to prepare pupils for life in our Sixth Form. The programme includes 
IGCSEs in Maths, Combined Science, English as a Second Language and Global Perspectives as well as lessons in literature and British culture.  In addition, many of our pupils choose to participate in the 

Young Enterprise Company programme.

All of our pupils are fully integrated within our boarding houses and participate in mainstream co-curricular sports and activities

Before you arrive...