All English language learners will participate in a quality instructional program that supports the development of a positive self concept as well as fosters pride and intercultural understanding. The district’s implemented instructional program is designed to meet the grade level academic standards as identified in Kentucky’s approved Program of Studies and Core Content for Assessment. Emphasis will be placed on providing students with the greatest possible access to core curriculum and afford students access to appropriate English language instruction that will ensure progress from limited English proficiency to fluent English proficiency.
The purpose of the District Plan for English language learners is to:
The District English Language Learner Program purpose is to ensure that:
The program for English language learners is designed to help students acquire fluency in English, to provide students with equal access to the academic core curriculum, and to help students maintain a positive self-concept. The district acknowledges that there are a variety of strategies and pedagogical approaches that may be used to accomplish these goals. The choice and combination of instructional strategies used are aligned to the individual student needs, State and Federal mandates, as well as parent request.
The district will accommodate Limited English Proficient students’ language level in the classroom and in some cases provide specific language instruction to help the student attain English language proficiency. To determine which educational approach(es) will be used for individual students, multiple factors are considered. These factors include, but are not limited to, English language proficiency data, other evaluation data that may be available, previous school records, teacher recommendations, district ESL coordinator input, as well as consultation with one of the NKCES ESL consultants.
The district is committed to ensuring a quality education for all students. In order to fulfill this mission and provide equal access to all core curricular areas, English language learners may receive one or more of the instructional approaches listed below. Each student’s Program Services Plan (PSP) lists the instructional approach or approaches to be implemented by the school. The following are available options:
Structured English Immersion – LEP students participate in mainstream/content classrooms where teachers differentiate instruction to address the linguistic needs and backgrounds of the LEP students. The goal is the acquisition of English while learning academic content.
Sheltered English Instruction – LEP students from one or more language background are grouped to receive specifically designed content area instruction that focuses on modifying the delivery of academic content so that the linguistic demand of the materials is appropriate for the English proficiency levels of the students. The goal is the achievement of academic content and skills.
Pull-out English Instruction – LEP Students are pulled from their mainstream classrooms for a portion of the day to receive instruction in English language development either individually or in small groups.
Collaborative Services (type 1) – The ESL teacher/aide/tutor/assistant goes into the mainstream classroom to assist LEP students with academic content and English language skills.
Collaborative Services (type 2) – The mainstream teacher and ESL consultant/teacher/tutor/aide/assistant work together to determine accommodations, modifications, and appropriate instructional strategies for LEP students.
Native language support – An ESL teacher/tutor/aide/assistant may use the native language to clarify information that was presented in English. This is used as a support system when needed not a bilingual approach.
Transition/Monitor Status – After a student’s evaluation data is determined to be above the necessary scores for exit the LEP student will be monitored for two years (see section X). The student’s PSP lists whether they are in their first or second year of monitoring.
The classroom teacher(s) will be the primary means of content area instruction and are required to accommodate the language needs of LEP students using one or more accommodations recommended by the ESL Consultant or certified ESL teacher. In addition, it is recommended that teachers modify lesson plans, classroom structure, and assignments to allow for the most favorable learning environment for LEP students. Teachers will note lesson modifications in their teaching plans. See section V for information regarding accommodations and modifications. Bilingual books, first language support and cultural sensitivity will be encouraged in all learning environments.
All students are expected to master the district's core curriculum goal expectations for each grade level. While it is understood that English language learners may master the content at a different rate than their native English peers, all students are held to the same high academic standards. Alternative measures may be used to assess the progress of English language learners who are learning English in addition to or until the student is able to be assessed using mainstream English measures. Multiple measures are used to monitor student progress toward meeting grade level standards.
Goal 1 – an annual increase in the number or percentage of students making progress in learning English (as measured by the Language Assessment Scales (LAS) test approved for use as an appropriate English language proficiency assessment).
Goal 2 – an annual increase in the number or percentage of students attaining English language proficiency (as measured by the Language Assessment Scales (LAS) test approved for use as an appropriate English language proficiency assessment).
Goal 3 – to make adequate yearly progress for the district’s LEP and immigrant students (as measured by academic assessments included in the Commonwealth Accountability Testing System (CATS) in the areas of mathematics, reading or language arts, and science).
Pursuant to 703 KAR 5:070 (March 2004, p12), all students will be asked four questions which shall be used to determine if a student is referred to the ESL program for language proficiency testing. Students whose first or home language is a language other than English or whose native language is a language other than English will be given the Language Assessment Scales proficiency test upon referral to determine language proficiency. Eligible proficiency scores are defined in section IV below.
Students transferring from other school districts within the U.S. whose home or native language is a language other than English will be tested for language proficiency if no ESL records from the transferring school have been received.
Student eligibility for services is not based on immigration status and districts are in fact prohibited from inquiring about the immigration status of a student or family. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in Plyler v. Doe [457 U.S. 202 (1982)] that public schools may not require social security numbers from all students as this may expose undocumented status. Students are also not required to show an original birth certificate for enrollment; “other reliable proof” such as a baptismal certificate, family bible with dutiful records, or an affidavit would suffice in place of the birth certificate.
All enrolling students in a participating district are required to complete a Home Language Survey, which determines whether or not a student is referred for testing. Students who are referred to the ESL Consultant are tested for language proficiency using the Language Assessment Scales (LAS) proficiency exam.
Students who do not attain a proficiency level of 3 (competent literate) in reading and writing skills or levels 4 or 5 (fluent) in oral skills are placed in the ESL Program as “Limited English Proficient”. It is possible for students to exhibit proficiency in two or three of the skills and be limited in only one. Such students are still classified as LEP until proficiency in all four skills is attained. Parental consent for participation must be obtained for each student. This is acquired when the Program Services Plan is signed by the parent or guardian. See section XI for parental rights.
ESL Program participants will be reevaluated yearly (each spring, prior to the close of the school year) for language proficiency gain. Adjustments to LEP students’ plans and/or re-designation will be made as necessary based on said yearly assessment. See section X for program exit requirements.
LEP students’ level of academic achievement for grade placement is ascertained by reviewing the following documents in addition to the recommendation of the ESL Consultant and an interview with the school’s counselor.
Each school shall assess all students with limited English proficiency enrolled on the first day of the testing window in all parts of the state-required assessments and their scores shall be included in accountability calculations consistent with state law, unless the students are in their first year of enrollment in a United States school.
Students with limited English proficiency in the first year of enrollment in a United States school shall be required to take an English language proficiency assessment and, if the student enrolls in a grade in which a NCLB-required mathematics test is administered, the state-required mathematics assessment with accommodations or modifications or both as appropriate.
All students with limited English proficiency enrolled on the first day of the testing window shall be included in calculations of the school and district’s participation rate. A student with limited English proficiency in the first year of enrollment in a United States school shall be included in the school and district’s participation rate based on the student’s participation in the NCLB-required mathematics assessment, if the student is enrolled in a grade where a NCLB-required mathematics assessment is administered. For students with limited English proficiency who are enrolled for the first year in a U.S. school and are not in a grade in which there is a NCLB-required mathematics test, their participation shall be based on taking an English language proficiency assessment (or the NCLB-required reading assessment if the school or district chooses to administer it).
Students with limited English proficiency in their first year of enrollment in a U.S. school shall not be required to participate in the state-required reading, science, social studies, practical living/vocational studies, arts and humanities, or writing on-demand assessments. For these students, these assessments shall be optional at the discretion of the school and district.
703 KAR 5:070, March 2004, pages 10-11
If a student with limited English proficiency who is not in the first year of enrollment in a U.S. school has been in an English language instructional environment for at least two (2) full school years prior to the year of the writing assessment in question, the student shall be required to submit a writing portfolio and shall be included in writing portfolio accountability calculations consistent with state law. For instructional purposes a school may allow a student with limited English proficiency, who has not been in an English language instructional environment for at least two (2) full school years prior to the year of the writing assessment in question, to develop a writing portfolio; however, the portfolio shall not be included in writing portfolio accountability calculations.
703 KAR 5:070, March 2004, pages 11-12
Accommodations or modifications or both, when consistent with the normal on-going delivery of instructional services, may include:
1. Administration Strategies:
· reading text to student in English;
· paraphrasing directions for tasks in English or in the student’s primary language;
· oral translation of text to the student’s primary language;
· administering assessments to small groups of students whose primary language is not English to enable paraphrasing in accordance with paraphrasing guidelines in Section 6 of this regulation and/or translations to student’s primary language; and
· administering a single form of the test to a small group of Limited English Proficient students receiving the accommodation of primary language interpretation because a limited number of staff with skills in the student’s native language are available.
2. Processing and Response Strategies:
· extended time
· use of foreign language dictionaries and glossaries that provide translations to student’s primary language;
· use of word processor or typewriter; and
· use of grammar or spell-check systems.
703 KAR 5:070, March 2004, pages 13-14
Appropriate accommodation and modifications for students with limited English proficiency will be written into each student’s Program Services Plan. In early spring, classroom teachers will be asked to confirm the accommodations/modifications that have been implemented as a part of the students’ daily instructional routine by using a checklist created, distributed, and monitored by NKCES. The ESL consultants at NKCES then distribute final assessment accommodations information to the district Title III consultant and/or DAC.
In accordance with No Child Left Behind, districts are required to provide a “highly qualified” teacher for LEP students if the teacher is presenting new core content material to a student for the first time. “Highly qualified” has been defined by EPSB as a teacher certified in the area he/she is teaching who holds the endorsement for ESL. However, if the teacher is reviewing or paraphrasing core content then districts are encouraged to provide a “highly qualified” teacher for LEP students. In the event that a district is unable to provide “highly qualified” personnel, the district is responsible for ensuring the education and training of the personnel providing instruction to the LEP students. Each district determines the program of education for non-qualified personnel. If districts utilize bilingual or multilingual individuals who are involved in the instruction of LEP students the district must ensure the fluency of the individual in the languages of instruction.
To assist with these requirements the district employs the support of the Northern Kentucky Cooperative for Educational Services and their ESL Consultants. The ESL Consultants provide staff meeting trainings, professional development opportunities, and on-site consultation available to all district staff. These opportunities explain and detail methodology, instructional strategies, legal responsibilities, second language acquisition reasons for student difficulties, accommodations and modifications, discussion of resource materials, and much more.
The ESL Consultant will reevaluate LEP students yearly for language proficiency and re-designation will be made based on the results of said reevaluation and consultation with school personnel. According to Jim Cummins (1994), ESL students will average anywhere from 5-7 years of language instruction to be academically “caught up” with their peers. Therefore, the ESL Program will strive to improve the language proficiency of its participating students within 5-7 years of placement. For those with limited formal schooling this period increases to 7-10 years. This is influenced by several factors including:
LEP students are held to the same academic standards as all students enrolled in Kentucky’s public schools. Classroom teachers will monitor and measure LEP students’ academic achievement and utilize accommodations and modifications listed in the student’s PSP in the classroom to ensure academic growth. See section V for information on inclusion in Kentucky’s accountability system.
LEP students may exhibit academic strengths that warrant a recommendation of gifted/talented by classroom teachers, counselor, or the ESL Consultant. In such an event, students will be referred to the district’s gifted/talented coordinator for review. The ESL Consultant should be informed of any placement in order to lend support to the teachers involved.
Should LEP students display weakness in a skill area, academic ability, or be suspected of having a learning disability, the ESL consultant at NKCES should be notified immediately. NKCES will then follow the procedure outlined in the document entitled “Special Education Referral Procedure.”
A district is not required to test pre-K students who may be considered LEP. However, because NKCES does have access to the PreLAS assessment it will be given to pre-K students as they are referred. Formal Program Services Plans (PSP) will not be developed for pre-K students although NKCES ESL consultants will work closely with pre-K teachers to ensure the students are gaining proficiency in the English language as well as academic issues such as letters, numbers, shapes, and colors. Once pre-K students are enrolled in the first grade they will be retested using the PreLAS and a conference with the pre-K teacher, parent, and ESL consultant will be recommended. If the student is found to be limited English proficient they will receive a formal PSP and will be officially enrolled in LEP services.
A district is also not required by law to test the language proficiency of foreign exchange students. If a student, whose first language is not English, is struggling in school, however, the district may request consultative assistance for classroom teachers and administrators who instruct this student. This will not exclude a foreign language student from participating in other academic programs or extracurricular activities.
LEP students who do attain a proficiency level of 3 (competent literate) in reading and writing skills or levels 4 or 5 in oral skills are deemed “proficient English speakers” and are able to be successful in academic classes without ESL accommodations or modifications. In consultation with classroom teachers and school counselors, the ESL Consultant will “transition” ESL students from active ESL instruction and begin the follow-up process as outlined below.
Upon transitioning a student from the ESL Program, the ESL Consultant will monitor students’ academic performance (two years required) utilizing progress and grade reports, conferences with classroom teachers and counselors, and interviews with students. Should a student exhibit difficulty that is language related, the ESL Consultant may recommend further action such as accommodations and modifications for both teachers and students or additional specialized instructional services. This is defined on a case-by-case basis and documented in the student’s permanent record.
Should a student’s academic and language performance be relegated as successful, the student will fully exit the program at the conclusion of two years or anticipated graduation date or withdrawal, whichever shall come first.
Parents (guardians) will be notified within 30 days of the date identified as LEP if a student is enrolled at the beginning of the school year and within 10 days thereafter.
Provision will be made for parents (guardians) to have input into students’ initial Program Services Plan if they desire.
Parents (guardians) will also be notified in writing within 30 days if the district has failed to meet the objectives outlined to the parent at initial placement/re-designation or upon failure to meet appropriate proficiency gains. Measures will be taken to correct the matter such as selection of new instructional materials, a new instructional method or approach, acquisition of a new/different teacher/tutor/aide/assistant, redefinition of classroom accommodations and modifications, etc.
Parents (guardians) of ESL students who are designated LEP can deny inclusion in the district’s ESL program. Such a desire must be documented by the district and included in the student’s permanent record.
Parents (guardians) also may choose to withdraw their child from the ESL program at any time. Every effort will be utilized, however, to explain the necessity of such instruction and effort will be made to alleviate any concerns or modify the students’ Program Services Plan in order for the child to remain in the program. Should withdrawal be made, it must be documented and included in the student’s permanent record.
Every effort will be made to encourage parent involvement in district activities including providing interpreters for conferences. NKCES will be working closely with the districts’ resources to ensure that parents of LEP students are included and active participants in their child’s education.
Each year the ESL Consultant will compile language proficiency test scores and compare them to previous language proficiency scores to determine if progress is being made in the area of language proficiency. This data will be submitted to the district ESL Coordinator.
Data from the Annual Measurable Achievement Objectives documentation provided by the Kentucky Department of Education will be used to re-evaluate the district’s current program for LEP students including instructional methods, staffing, and resources available.
The district will also analyze CATS data provided by KDE to determine if students are meeting adequate yearly progress.
Other data that can be used by the district to determine program effectiveness are: retention rate, drop-out rate, and graduation rate.
Pursuant to NCLB Title III part C section 3302, the school district will notify parents/guardians in writing within 30 days of the evaluation if the district has failed to meet the objectives outlined to the parent at initial or continuing placement notification or upon failure to meet appropriate proficiency gains.
TITLE III: LANGUAGE INSTRUCTION FOR LIMITED ENGLISH PROFICIENT AND IMMIGRANT STUDENTS
11. The LEA/local school district assures that it will hold accountable all elementary, middle and high schools receiving Title III funds in meeting the district’s annual measurable achievement objectives (as stated in the previous assurance statement) through a program evaluation submitted to the district at the end of the fiscal year.
Williams, Michael L. (9/27/1991) Memorandum. U.S. Department of Education: Washington. www.ed.gov/offices/OCR/ELL/september27.html
“Title III: Language Instruction for Limited English Proficient and Immigrant Students” in No Child Left Behind Act. (2001) U.S. Department of Education: Washington. http://www.ed.gov/legislation/ESEA02/
703 KAR 5:070 Inclusion of Special Populations in the State Required Assessment and Accountability Programs. (March 2004) Kentucky Department of Education: Frankfurt. www.kde.state.ky.us/oaa/implement/dac_index.asp
Cummins, Jim. (1994, 2nd edition) “Primary Language Instruction and the Education of Language Minority Students” in Schooling and Language Minority Students: A Theoretical Framework. Evaluation, Dissemination and Assessment Center: Los Angeles.
De Avila, Edward. (1997) Setting Expected Gains for Non and Limited English Proficient Students. National Clearinghouse for Bilingual Education: Washington, DC.