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Northcote High School English Language Centre

International students commencing their education in Victorian Government schools have an opportunity to complete a 20 week intensive English Language Course (ELC) prior to their commencement. A high literacy level is critical to international students’ enrolment and success in their tertiary studies.

The Northcote High School English Language Centre provides international students from various language backgrounds an introduction to education in Australia, and opportunities to integrate with local students and develop a cultural understanding of our society.

As young adolescents entering a foreign country at a time when social and emotional development is paramount, for many the first time away from parents and families, they quickly turn to other young people for support. Strong and co-dependent friendships form quickly and international students benefit from forming strong relationships and gaining collegial support from the students they will be spending the next 3.5 years of study with.

Northcote High School has well established protocols, systems and processes in place to ensure all students feel included, are aware of and ‘live’ our vision and values, and understand our expectations of ourselves and each other, as we share the journey to achieving success.

International students will have the best possible experience, achieve the best academic outcomes and develop strong leadership capacity if they integrate broadly into the wider school community, whether it be through participation in the music program, in sporting teams, in debating and public speaking competitions or as student leaders.

Program Structure and Features

The program is structured to enable students to achieve an enhanced level of success in mainstream schooling through exposure to the Australian education system and school life.

It provides intensive English language tuition in the context of a mainstream school curriculum so that students gain effective control of the language of subject learning areas. The students spend eight periods a week focusing on English language learning through a variety of topics relevant to the curriculum that they will be exposed to in Year 10 and beyond in VCE. There is a strong emphasis on building an academic vocabulary that will lead to success in the mainstream schooling environment. Students also study a range of other subjects with local students as part of their program, including maths, design, the arts, sport and community engagement. This is designed to facilitate connections with the broader school community and to improve the transition from the 20 week intensive course to the Year 10 curriculum.


  • Specialist English language tuition
  • Small class sizes
  • Studies in the areas of Mathematics, Science, Humanities, Art, Sport and Technologies
  • Joint activities with other curriculum areas including sport, assemblies, concerts and performances, multicultural activities and outdoor activities or events
  • Extensive tours and excursions program including parks, the city and the local area
  • Study plan and course selection process to help students entering mainstream classes and other educational pathways
  • Extensive wellbeing and homestay support
  • Additional language and academic support
  • Academic extension program opportunities
  • Transition support to help students and families enter mainstream classes at the conclusion of their 20 weeks. This includes career support and guidance in course and subject selection.


Enrolment is open to students intending to study at Northcote High School. Students are at Year 10 to Year 11 level.

Management of the English Language Centre

The program is the responsibility of the Director of Global Education including student management, social opportunities and homestay accommodation.

The ELC teachers work collaboratively with the International Student Program team to develop curriculum and monitor students’ academic progress.

Northcote High School welcomes enrolment enquiries from the wide international community. Please contact:

Director of Global Education – Ms Jocelyn Hill:

English Language Centre Handbook 2022

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