1 Dover Public Schools, Sherborn Public Schools and the Dover-Sherborn Regional School District s English Language Education Programming, Policies and Practices July 2013
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3 Contents 1 Introduction English Language Education Program and Structure Process for Identifying English Language Learners Including the Administrative Processing of Formats and Procedures... 5 Home Language Survey... 5 Testing Process & Testing Instruments... 7 Bilingual Tutor Assessment Using the Student Observation Matrix [SOLOM]... 7 Assigning an ESL Level to Identified English Language Learners... 7 Flow Chart of Steps for Identifying ELLs Process for Annually Assessing English Language Learners Process for Transferring a Student from the ELE Program Monitor Procedures for Former English Language Learners Waiver Procedures State Mandated MCAS testing Participation Requirements English/Spanish Tests Use of Approved Word-to-Word Dictionaries Participation of English Language Learners with Disabilities Professional Development Plan Program Evaluation Plan Special Education Pre-Referral, Referral, and IEP Process Forms Home Language Survey... Form 1 Record of Bilingual Translation Activities with Parents/Guardians... Form 2 Parent Letter Scheduling Testing to Identify English Language Learners... Form 3
5 Student Oral Language Observation Matrix (for native language... Form 4 Identification, Annual, & Transition Assessment of ELLs... Form 5 Parent/Guardian Letter about Evaluation of Newly Enrolled Students... Form 6 Parent/Guardian Letter about Annual Evaluation... Form 7 School District Waiver Application Form... Form 8 Parent/Guardian Waiver Application for Alternative Program... Form 9 Parents/Guardians Decline Services for Their Child... Form 10 Parent/Guardian Letter about WIDA Testing Dates... Form 11 Parent Letter about WIDA ACCESS results... Form 12 ESL Progress Report for Schools with 4 terms... Form 13 ESL Progress Report for Schools with 3 terms... Form 14 Parent/Guardian Letter when Student is Proficient in English... Form 15 Two-Year Monitor Report of Former ELLs in Schools with 4 terms... Form 16 Two-Year Monitor Report of Former ELLs in Schools with 3 terms... Form 17
7 Introduction 1 1 Introduction to the Dover, Sherborn, and Dover-Sherborn Regional Schools English Language Education Programming This booklet was written for the Dover Public Schools, Sherborn Public Schools, and Dover Regional Schools, hereinafter referred to as the Dover Sherborn Public Schools, in collaboration with Dr. Debbie Zacarian, Director of the Center for English Language Education (CELE) at the Collaborative for Educational Services in Northampton, Massachusetts. It is written with four audiences in mind: (1) Administrators who have been charged with creating programming for the English Language Learners in their schools, (2) Teachers and support staff who are working to help their students to learn English and academic subject matter; and (3) Guidance counselors and others who are working to build a collaborative community of learners. (4) School secretaries and others who engage in enrolling/registering new students. Dover Sherborn Public Schools must pursue the highest level of individual student achievement in an environment that fosters individual worth, self-respect, and respect for others. The School will develop in all students knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes that will enable all students to lead productive lives in a complex society. The goal of our English Language Education Program is to provide students with a program of study that complements our district s mission, is inclusive, and that honors the various language and cultural representatives found within our student population. It takes into account federal and Massachusetts laws and guidelines about educating public school English Language Learners. Steven Bliss Superintendent July 2013
9 English Language Education Program and Structure 2 2 English Language Education Program and Structure Dover Sherborn Public Schools In September 2012, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education [MA DESE] adopted the English language development standards and assessments of the World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment [WIDA] Consortium. Its five Standards state that English language development is: 1. for social and academic purposes 2. to communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of Language Arts. 3. to communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of Mathematics 4. to communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of Science 5. to communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of Social Studies 1 Drawing from the MA DESE s adoption of the WIDA Standards, 2 there are five levels of English language development for identified English Language Learners and a sixth level, labeled reaching, when a student appears to be proficient in English. Each of the five levels of English language development [ELD] are detailed in WIDA s Can- Do descriptors. 3 They are separated by grade span and are based on a core philosophy that all English Learners can be active contributors to their learning communities when instruction is planned and delivered according to each student s level of ELD. Figure 1 provides a description of the WIDA levels. 1 A full explanation of the WIDA standards may be found at and are used by ESL teachers and core content teachers to guide instruction. 2 Ibid. 3 A full description of the WIDA Can-Do can be found at According to WIDA, these are commonly used by commonly used by ESL teachers in coaching general education teachers about differentiated instruction for English Language Learners (ELLs).
10 Level 1 - Entering Level 2 - Emerging Level 3 - Developing Level 4 - Expanding Level 5 - Bridging Level 6 - Reaching English Language Education Program and Structure 3 Figure 1: English Language Development Levels In our district, identified English learners in levels 1-5 are provided with a program of study in English as a Second Language (ESL) that addresses their particular English learning needs. ESL classes are provided until a student demonstrates that he/she is proficient in English. Further, ESL instructors work with elementary grade level and secondary content teachers to create as seamless an instructional program as possible. Note: ESL classes are considered regular education and should be provided in learning environments that are equitable to typical English Language Arts classes. Students progress from one ESL level to the next as they acquire more proficiency in English. Progress is determined through the use of various assessments, including student performance in class, the WIDA Apt assessment, and state mandated WIDA ACCESS and MCAS testing. When students demonstrate proficiency in English they are transitioned to classes that do not use a sheltered approach. We believe in an inclusionary instructional program model whereby English Language Learners are placed in math, science, and social studies classes with native speakers of American English. English Language Learners, at all levels, will be placed in these classes with bilingual tutorial support/esl support as needed. When a bilingual support cannot be secured, an English tutor will be employed to assist students in meaningfully understanding content. In these classrooms, teachers use a sheltered instructional approach so that English Language Learners actively participate in their learning most of the time. In these classrooms, lessons are planned to be: o appropriate for English Language Learners at all levels of proficiency as described by the WIDA English language development standards; o guided by language and content objectives appropriate for English Language Learners who are at different proficiency levels; o aligned with the Common Core State Standards and WIDA English Language Development Standards; and o characterized by student interaction, students questions, groupwork, theme based units of study, and other important strategies for effective sheltered instruction. Further, subject matter teachers are being trained to use strategies that: o make language objectives, content objectives and academic tasks visible;
11 English Language Education Program and Structure 4 o use supplementary materials, graphic organizers, visuals and manipulatives to make content more comprehensible; o group students so that all English Language Learners may actively participate; and, o integrate language instruction with content instruction so that students may acquire English and the academic language that is needed across subject matters. In addition to instruction in ESL, students will be placed in English language arts classes as they acquire more proficiency in English. The goal of our district s English language education program is to provide its English learners with a program of study that is inclusive and that honors the various language and cultural representatives found within our student population. To this end, we have created processes by which students and their families are welcomed into our school community and supported to become active members of it.
13 Identification of ELLs 5 3 Process for Identifying English Language Learners Including the Administrative Processing of Formats and Procedures Dover Sherborn Public Schools Identifying English Language Learners Elementary, Middle, and High School administrators or designees will take steps needed to ensure that families of English Language Learners are welcomed and informed about their child s school routines and procedures. The parents/guardians of every child entering the Dover Sherborn Public Schools will be given a Home Language Survey (Form 1). Every student whose parents or guardians have indicated on the school s Home Language Survey form that their child uses a language other than English must be assessed in English in the areas of listening and speaking and, where age appropriate, reading and writing. When should students be tested? Each student will be assessed during his/her first week of school. The following steps will be followed (a flow chart of these steps are illustrated in Figure 3.1 on page 9): A. School Secretaries will: 1. Review the Home Language Survey of every student with parent/guardian to ensure that it is completed successfully. Bilingual translators will be employed when there is a parent/guardian that cannot communicate in English (see step 2c). 2. Immediately contact the ELL Coordinator-Teacher when there is a: a. Home Language Survey in which a language other than English is stated, b. Teacher and/or parent/guardian concern that a student may be an English Language Learner. c. Bilingual translator needed. The Assistant Superintendent will secure a bilingual translator (see C in this section) when it is stated that the parent/guardian prefers oral and written communication from the school in their home language to support the registration process and ongoing communication 3. Immediately send a copy of the Home Language Survey and School Registration form to the English Language Education Program Coordinator/ESL teacher. 4. File original Home Language Survey in the student s cumulative record.
14 Identification of ELLs 6 B. ELL Coordinator-Teacher will do the following (note: at the secondary level, guidance counselor will join when possible): 1. Meet with parents/guardians to learn as much as possible about the student s prior schooling. This includes learning about the student s prior school schedule/day. (Note: there can be significant differences between American public school practices and school practices in other countries including limited access to schooling, shorter number of days attended in a week, and the age in which students begin school.) Obtaining this information will greatly help in developing an understanding about the student s prior school experiences. In addition, some students may have had limited or interrupted prior schooling. In these instances, it may be important to provide assessments in a language that the student understands to determine the most appropriate instructional program. Further, it is important to share this information with the student s teachers. 2. Assist parents/guardians and their child in completing the registration process. *Note: Students and parents/guardians who are not able to communicate in English will be afforded every opportunity to understand the school s registration process & become active members of the school community. The district s Assistant Superintendent will employ bilingual translators for this purpose. A record of parent/guardian bilingual translation activities should be documented (Form 2) and filed in each student s cumulative record. a. Review the following with the student and his/her parent/guardian (with support of translator, when needed): o Student s class schedule o School schedule o Extracurricular activities available to all students o Lunch procedure and an explanation of the process by which students may participate in free and reduced lunch o Student s right to equal access to an education b. Provide parents/guardians and student (with support of translator, when needed) with support to: o Complete the emergency card o Understand the student handbook o Be informed about school related activities and procedures o Respond to parents/guardians questions, concerns, and ideas about their child or school o Be apprised of their child s academic progress o Be routinely notified about important school-related information or extracurricular activities that were not communicated at enrollment o Assist parents/guardians to be active members of the school community
15 Identification of ELLs 7 o Assist parents/guardians and students with post graduate plans that routinely occur for all students C. Assistant Superintendent will: 1. Work with ELL Coordinator-Teacher to employ bilingual translators when needed for parents/guardians conferences/meetings and when students require clarification during instruction. 2. Work with guidance counselors, headmaster, and/or designee, when needed, to learn about the student s math skills (this activity may require the support of bilingual translator). D. ELL Coordinator-teacher will: 1. Meet with guidance counselor to review the completed registration forms and learn about the student s prior schooling. 2. Administer identification testing [including WIDA Apt in listening, speaking, reading, and writing and Kindergarten screening when appropriate] or assign testing to appropriate ESL testing during the student s first week of school. 3. Ask bilingual translator (when employed) to informally assess students home language using SOLOM matrix (Form 4). Note: The ESL instructor should take time to explain how the matrix is used and that it is typical for a student to receive a 5 in all areas. 4. Assign an ESL level to identified English Language Learners drawing from WIDA Apt. 5. Complete the Identification, Annual, and Transfer Assessment form (Form 5) by: designating whether or not the student appears to be an English Language Learner; assigning an ESL level for students that have been identified as English Language Learners; checking box that indicates whether bilingual tutorial support is needed. Bilingual tutors are generally recommended for students assigned ESL levels 1 & 2. However, students may continue to need clarification in the native language until they are able to learn independently in a monolingual English instructed classroom. 6. Confer with guidance counselors and administrators at each school about testing results to determine recommendations for grade level classroom and course placement..
16 Identification of ELLs 8 7. Make a copy of the appropriate Assessment form, attach it to the original WIDA Apt testing protocols and send these to the Assistant Superintendent. 8. File original of the Assessment form in student s cumulative record. 9. Mail letter to parents/guardians about the recommendation (Form 6).
17 Identification of ELLs 9 Table 3.1: Flow Chart School secretary reads Home Language Survey and/or meets parents/guardians Home Language Survey indicates language other than English Parents/guardians appear to need bilingual translator Home Language is English Contact ELL Coordinator- Teacher ELL Coordinator- Teacher administers assessments to identify ELLs Contact Assistant Superintendent immediately by phone and Student is not evaluated for ELE program ELL Coordinator- Teacher finds student to be ELL ELL Coordinator- Teacher finds student to be fluent in English Asst. Supt employs bilingual translator ELL Coordinator- Teacher contacts Asst. Supt. to send parents/guardians rec. letter ELL Coordinator- Teacher meets with guidance counselor &/or Principal/Headmaster : re: courses, grade, ELE program ELL Coordinator- Teacher contacts Asst. Supt to inform parents/guardians no ELE program needed and contacts guidance counselor about same Guidance Counselor meets with parents/guardians (with translator assistance)
19 Annually assessing ELLs 10 4 Process for Annually Assessing English Language Learners English Language Learners are assessed periodically and in a variety of ways to assess their progress of English language development and core subject matter learning. Each marking term: The ELL Coordinator-Teacher will: A. Assess the English language development of each English Language Learner and complete the appropriate ELL progress report (Form 15). The originals will be given to elementary teachers and secondary guidance counselors to be sent home with the report card. Annually: Following the schedule assigned by the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, each English Language Learner will be assessed using the state WIDA ACCESS or Alternative ACCESS for WIDA assessment 4. The results of the WIDA ACCESS will be analyzed before any annual placement decisions are made. A. ELL Coordinator-Teacher or designee will perform testing and will: 1. Administer appropriate WIDA ACCESS or Alternative ACCESS for WIDA assessments Analyze WIDA ACCESS findings along with student performance in core subject matter instruction drawing from the progress reports that have been completed by core subject matter teachers. 3. Complete Identification, Annual, and Transfer Assessment form (Form 5) for each student to summarize annual findings and recommendations. 4. Check box indicating that bilingual tutorial support is needed when it is needed. Note: Bilingual tutors are generally recommended for students assigned ESL 4 Information about the WIDA ACCESS and Alternative ACCESS may be found at 5 Information about the WIDA ACCESS and Alternative ACCESS may be found at
20 Annually assessing ELLs 11 levels 1 & 2. However, students may continue to need clarification in the native language until they are able to learn independently in a monolingual English instructed classroom. 5. Confer with guidance counselor about testing results and recommendations. 6. Copy Identification, Annual, and Transfer Assessment form (Form 5) and send to Assistant Superintendent. 7. File original Identification, Annual, and Transfer Assessment form in student s cumulative folder. 8. Confer with the Assistant Superintendent to mail letter to parents/guardians about the ELE Program recommendation. 9. Mail information about student reassessment and program recommendation to parents/guardians (Form 7). 10. File copy of student s Identification, Annual, and Transfer Assessment form and testing protocols in ELE program files.
21 Re-classifying ELLs to former English Language Learners 12 5 Process for Transferring a Student from the ELE program Student readiness for ordinary classroom work in English without reliance on a specifically designed program for learning English is the major criteria for determining whether a student may be reclassified as a former English language learner. Reclassification planning will occur at the end of the school year. ELL Coordinator-Teacher will: A. Administer WIDA ACCESS testing as part of the state assessment of English learners. B. Draw from the results of the WIDA ACCESS testing and any prior state assessments (including the MEPA and MCAS) as factors to determine student readiness to transfer from the ELE program. Students should score well within the competent literate range*: *Note: Students with identified learning disabilities in areas that impact these domains may score lower on standardized assessments. In these cases, student classroom performance may be the important criterion for reclassification. C. Analyze student classroom performance across all core subject matters to determine student readiness for reclassification to former English Language Learner. Document findings on the appropriate Assessment form (Form 5). 1. Meet with student s academic teachers to learn about the student s progress in these subject matters. D. When the student appears to be proficient in English: 1. Confer with student s teacher(s) and guidance counselor 2. Meet with the parents/guardians to discuss the assessment findings and recommendations. 3. Arrange transition process. 4. Mail parent/guardian letter (Form 15)
23 Monitor Process 13 6 Monitor Procedures for Former English Language Learners In accordance with federal and the Massachusetts Department of Education Guidelines, public school districts must periodically monitor the progress of a student for at least 2 years after the student has been reclassified from an English Language Learner to a Former English Language Learner. The monitor process includes periodic evaluations of student progress in all academic areas. Forms 16 and 17 should be used for this process. In the beginning of each school year: 1. Assistant Superintendent or ELL Coordinator-Teacher will furnish school with a master list of students that transferred from the program during the prior two years to ensure that students are monitored for two full years after completing the ELE program. 2. ELL Coordinator-Teacher will furnish English Language Arts, math, science, and social studies teachers of each of these students with a copy of the monitor form so that they may begin observing their students performance according to the activities included in it. Each marking and progress reporting period: 1. Grade level and secondary content teachers will complete the monitor form and return it to his/her school ELL Coordinator-Teacher. 2. ELL Coordinator-Teacher will: a. Review the form 1. When a student does not appear to be successfully transitioning, meet with the student and student s parents/guardians to determine whether the student should be reclassified as an English Language Learner and receive any additional support that is needed. If yes, a assessment form (Form 5) should be completed and letter should be sent to the parents informing them that their child has been reassessed and re-entered into the ELE program (Form 7). b. Send a copy of it to the Assistant Superintendent c. File original in student s cumulative folder
25 7 Waiver Procedures Waiver Procedures 14 Waiver Procedures When a student is identified as an English Language Learner (based on the assessment findings of the ELL Coordinator-Teacher) a letter is sent to the student s parents/guardians recommending English Language Education services. There are two versions of the letter: 1. New students 2. Returning English Language Learners who have been re-assessed annually. Each version indicates that parents/guardians have the right to decline the recommendation for services for their child. Parents/guardians must complete the form declining services to inform the school of this decision. When parents/guardians decline services for their child, the ELL Coordinator-Teacher, with support from the School Principal/Headmaster and Assistant Superintendent should: Encourage parents/guardians to allow their child to participate in the English Language Education program for a limited period of time before they decline. Continue to monitor the academic progress of the student. Ensure that English learners are placed with teachers that are endorsed by the MA DESE to provide sheltered English instruction 6 Meet with parents/guardians when a student is not progressing to recommend that services be reinstated. Send a copy of any declined services form, (Form 10), to the Assistant Superintendent. File the original declined services form in the student s cumulative record. When parents/guardians request an alternative program: Parents/guardians may seek a waiver from the recommended program by requesting an alternative program, such as bilingual education, or some other type of language support. To do so, they must apply for a waiver (Form 9). 6 Information about the requirements of teachers and administrators may be found by checking the MA DESE website at It is important to check this site periodically to ensure that teachers and administrators have the knowledge and skills required by the MA DESE.
26 Waiver Procedures 15 The decision to issue a waiver will be made by Dover Sherborn Public Schools administrators, who are under guidelines established by and subject to the review of the local school community. 7 The district s guidelines may, but are not required to, include an appeals process. Dover Sherborn Public Schools officials will make the final decision about the waiver request. Records of requested waivers should be retained in the student s cumulative record with copies sent to the Assistant Superintendent. When Dover Sherborn Public school official(s) issue waivers: Dover Sherborn Public Schools should offer waivers only when it is our informed belief that an alternative course of study is better suited to a student s overall educational process. Waivers should be recommended in consultation with the Assistant Superintendent and School Superintendent. If there are 20 or more students in a given grade who receive a waiver, bilingual classes or some other type of language support must be offered, or students must be permitted to transfer to a public school within the district in which such classes are offered. Further, if a point is reached in which there are 20 English Language Learners from the same language group and in the same grade and parents/guardians request a waiver, Dover Sherborn Public Schools are required to offer classes in bilingual education or another recognized educational methodology permitted by law. The laws regarding students under the age of 10 require that waivers can be provided, with parents/guardians consent, when it is the informed belief of the ELL Coordinator-Teacher in concert with school principal/headmaster that an alternative course of educational study would be better suited to the student s overall progress. Further, the laws regarding students under the age of 10 also require the following: 1. The student must be placed in a Sheltered English Instruction classroom for at least 30 calendar days before the parent/guardian can apply for a waiver. 2. School officials must write a document of no less than 250 words that the student s special and individual physical or psychological needs, separate from the lack of proficiency in English, makes an alternative course of study better suited for the student s overall academic development and rapid acquisition of English. The laws regarding students with an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP), or 504 Plan, allows for instruction to occur in the native language when this instruction has been determined as the course of action due to a learning disability. Waivers are not required to conduct bilingual special education programming. 7 MADESE G.L.C. C. 71A School District Program waivers for English Language Learners. p. 1
27 Waiver Procedures 16 A waiver for a student under the age of 10 should NOT be completed by school officials without the consent of the Assistant Superintendent and School Superintendent. *Note: Records of waivers should be retained in the student s cumulative record with copies.
29 State mandated MCAS testing 17 8 State Mandated MCAS Testing 8 A. MCAS Participation Requirements for English Language Learners 1. Participation All identified English Language Learners will participate in MCAS tests scheduled for their grades. To ensure that this occurs properly, the ELL Coordinator-Teacher will work closely with each school s MCAS Coordinator. 2. Optional Participation The sole exception applies to English Language Learners who are in their first year of enrollment in U.S. schools. According to the MA DESE, public schools have the option of assessing first year English Language Learners in the English Language Arts and Reading tests. First-Year ELL Students 1 All Other MCAS Participation Requirements for ELL Students Source: Content Area Test English Language Arts Mathematics Science and Technology/Engineering Optional 2 Required Required Required Required Required Students 1 Results for first-year ELL students are not included in MCAS school and district summary results. 2 ELA testing is optional provided that the student has participated in ACCESS for ELLs. a. English/Spanish Tests Spanish-speaking ELL students in grade 10 who have been enrolled in school in the continental United States for fewer than three years may choose to take the English/Spanish version of the grade 10 Mathematics test if they can read and write in Spanish at or near grade level. English/Spanish editions of the Mathematics test are available for the grade 10 Mathematics tests and retest only. 8 The information in this section is referenced from the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education s Requirements for the Participation of English Language Learners in ACCESS for ELLs and MCAS.
30 State mandated MCAS testing 18 The designated test administrator must be fluent in both English and Spanish. Students may respond to test questions in English or in Spanish. 3. Use of Word-to-Word Dictionaries on MCAS Tests Any ELL student, including students who have been identified as ELL in the past, may use an authorized bilingual word-to-word dictionary and/or glossary on the following MCAS tests: ELA authorized word-word to word dictionary (if available) Mathematics authorized word-to-word dictionary and glossary (if available) Science and Technology/Engineering authorized word-to-word dictionary and glossary (if available) Dictionary use for MCAS tests is strictly limited to those that provide word-to-word translations. Dictionaries that include definitions, synonyms, antonyms, phrases, and other information are strictly prohibited. Electronic dictionaries are not allowed. Note: The use of bilingual word-to-word dictionaries and glossaries is prohibited on all ACCESS for ELLs tests. A list of authorized bilingual dictionaries and glossaries, updated in 2012, is available on the Department s website at To discuss the approval of a word-to-word dictionary not included in the list, please call Participation of ELL Students with Disabilities in MCAS ELL students with disabilities must participate in MCAS by taking either MCAS test(s), with or without accommodations OR MCAS Alternate Assessment (MCAS- Alt) The ELL student s Individualized Education Program (IEP) Team or 504 team must determine how the student will participate in MCAS testing and must document this information in the student s IEP or 504 plan. Additional information is available in the Requirements for the Participation of Students with Disabilities in MCAS ( Update), which is posted on the Department s website at 5. Reporting MCAS Results for ELL Students Results for ELL students are reported with those of other students, and separately in the ELL subgroup. The one exception is the reporting of results for first-year ELL students. In reporting results for state and federal accountability, scores for ELL students with disabilities are included in two categories: students with disabilities and ELL students.
31 Student-level MCAS Results Participation for Accountability Achievement and Growth for Accountability State mandated MCAS testing 19 MCAS/State and Federal Accountability Reporting for First-Year ELL Students How Results are Reported for Each Content Area Test English Language Arts (Testing optional) Mathematics (Testing required) Science and Technology/Engineering (Testing required) Student item analysis roster report (if tested) Counted as participating whether tested or not, provided that student participated in ACCESS for ELLs Not included in state and federal accountability calculations Student item analysis roster report Counted as participating unless absent Not included in state and federal accountability calculations Student item analysis roster report Counted as participating unless absent Not included in state and federal accountability calculations 6. High School Competency Determination (CD) All Massachusetts students, including English language learners, are required to meet the CD standard in English language arts (ELA), mathematics, and science and technology/engineering (STE) in order to graduate. To earn a CD, students must either earn a scaled score of at least 240 on both the grade 10 MCAS ELA and Mathematics tests, or earn a scaled score between 220 and 238 on both tests and fulfill the requirements of an Educational Proficiency Plan (EPP). Students must also earn a scaled score of at least 220 on one of the high school STE tests in Biology, Chemistry, Introductory Physics, or Technology/Engineering. In addition to passing MCAS tests, students must meet all local graduation requirements. Students who transfer to a Massachusetts high school during their senior year must take and pass tests in ELA, mathematics, and science and technology/engineering in order to graduate from high school. Students eligible to take the English/Spanish edition of the MCAS grade 10 Mathematics test may meet the CD requirement in Mathematics through this test but must also pass ELA and STE tests in English. Since the CD requirement may present a challenge for ELL students who have recently enrolled in a U.S. school, some ELL students may need to continue their education beyond grade 12 in order to attain the requisite knowledge and skills in ELA, mathematics, and STE. After grade 12, students who still need to pass one or more of the required MCAS tests may take the MCAS retest(s) at the school in which they were last enrolled. Some students may also be eligible for an MCAS performance appeal. For more information on meeting the graduation requirement, please refer to the Department s website at
33 Professional development plan 20 9 Professional Development Plan Dover Sherborn Public Schools The laws and regulations governing the education of Massachusetts public and public charter schools require teachers of the English language development program to be licensed in ESL and core subject matter teachers be qualified to shelter English instruction. 9 Dover Public, Sherborn Public and Dover-Sherborn Regional Schools ELs receive English language development from an appropriately licensed ESL teacher. Prior Professional Development Activities for Core Subject Matter Teachers Between 2002 and 2012, many core subject matter teachers voluntarily participated in sheltered English instruction [SEI] professional development activities across the Commonwealth. Commonly referred to as SEI category training and described Figure 10.1, its purpose was to increase the preparedness of the state s public and public charter school teachers of ELLs 10 as many of the state s teachers had not been trained in this essential area. Figure MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Approved Trainings: Category 1: Second language learning and teaching Category 2: Sheltering content instruction Category 3: Assessment of speaking and listening Category 4: Teaching reading and writing to ELLs Educator licensure & license renewal regulations of teachers & supervisors of ELLs- RETELL In June 2012, the MA Board of Elementary and Secondary Education approved amendments to the regulations governing educator licensure and educator license renewal for teachers and supervisors of teachers of English learners. The regulations made training of teachers and administrators of teachers of ELLs mandatory as opposed to voluntary. According to the MA Commissioner of the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education 11 : 9 The laws regarding a licensed ESL teacher in MA may be found at 10 The categories covering this period of professional development for sheltered English immersion teachers is fully described by the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education at 11 The memo written by the Commissioner may be found at
34 Professional development plan 21 The RETELL initiative is a multifaceted and comprehensive approach designed to provide ELLs access to effective instruction and close proficiency gaps. The regulations calling for the SEI endorsement are an essential component but there are others. The SEI course - the training/professional development program that will lead to the SEI endorsement - will give educators a basic foundation of knowledge, skills, and understanding critical to SEI instruction. Beyond the coursework, instruction and professional practice in classrooms and schools will improve for ELLs through ongoing supervision and evaluation, updated standards and assessments, data review, and support for SEI teachers through coaching and other resources. To that end, along with the regulations, the components of RETELL include: Model SEI Endorsement Course Two model SEI Endorsement courses will be delivered; one for core academic teachers of ELLs and one for building administrators who supervise such teachers. Veteran educators who fall into these groups will be required to complete the course or otherwise earn the SEI endorsement between 2012 and The model course for teachers will replace the Category Trainings; it will combine face-to-face and online sessions ("blended learning"). The course of study will establish a strong foundation of knowledge and skills for educators of ELLs. We recognize, however, that a course cannot by itself bring about the kinds of changes in practice necessary to closing the proficiency gap for ELLs. The course lays the foundation upon which a structured program of ongoing reinforcement and support can build, through these additional elements: Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) and Coaching Facilitated peer support through PLCs and coaching by SEI experts will help teachers apply the knowledge and skills acquired in the course to teaching ELLs in the classroom. These supports to strengthen practice will begin during the course and will continue after course completion as educators integrate what they have learned into the day-to-day challenges of teaching and learning. Ongoing Professional Development and Growth The proposed requirement that every educator complete at least 15 professional development points (PDPs) related to SEI and/or English as a Second Language during each upcoming license renewal cycle, combined with the professional development planning that is part of the new educator evaluation system, will help to sustain the focus on effective classroom practice. More Robust ELL Standards and Assessments Massachusetts is transitioning to the World- Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA) standards and the accompanying Assessing Comprehension and Communication in English State-to-State (ACCESS) in the coming school year. These moves will better prepare ELLs to meet the new English language arts and mathematics standards adopted by the Board in December 2010; both are aligned to the Common Core Standards. Establishing Expectations and Goals for ELL Achievement and Growth Closing the proficiency gap for ELLs will be a key consideration as educators and their supervisors set goals for student achievement and growth that reflect high yet achievable expectations under the new educator evaluation system.
35 Professional development plan 22 School and District Accountability for Closing Achievement Gaps The Massachusetts accountability system classifies schools and districts into one of five levels based in part on the performance of student groups, one of which is ELLs. For each school and district, we make an annual determination: Level 1 signifies that each student group is on track to halve the rate of non-proficient students within six years; where one or more student groups is not on track to halve the rate of non-proficient students, Level 2 is designated; Level 3 means the performance of one or more student groups is in the bottom 20 percent statewide; Level 4 schools and districts are among the bottom five percent statewide; and Level 5 are those under state receivership (currently, the Lawrence school district is in Level 5 due to the high dropout rate and low academic performance of students). Each level beyond Level 1 receives increasing amounts of intervention, support, and technical assistance. The U.S. Education Department has accepted our updated accountability system. Specific Interventions for ELLs The Commonwealth's statutes and regulations on accountability for schools (including charter schools) and districts include specific requirements for attending to the academic performance of ELLs. For example, state law requires charter schools to adopt and implement plans for recruitment and retention of ELLs as well as tailoring of instructional programs to meet the needs of ELLs. The school and district accountability requirements include plans that address the specific needs of ELLs. Data to Inform Instruction and Assess Impact Building on our transition to "near real time" data collection, all 80,000 K-12 educators will be able to access continuously updated information about how well their students are learning new content through the P-20 longitudinal data system. Reports will provide: early identification of ELLs (and other students) who are at risk of not meeting curriculum standards, analyses of the efficacy of curricula and student support interventions, and the ability to evaluate the overall impact of RETELL and other major initiatives. Additional Resources for Teaching and Student Support Three major Race to the Top-supported projects will increase and enhance the delivery of effective, targeted instruction and support to ELLs. Model curriculum units aligned with the Massachusetts standards (incorporating the Common Core) are being developed for English language arts/literacy, mathematics, science, and history/social science instruction for every K-12 grade. These model curriculum units will be accompanied by new assessment, multi-media instructional resources and up-to-date on-demand data that will explicitly support targeted instruction for ELLs. In addition, the Massachusetts Tiered System of Support (MTSS) will build more effective systems of student support and intervention within schools and through collaborations with other community organizations.
36 Professional development plan 23 Figure 9.2 Prior and Current Regulations for Core Subject Matter Teachers of ELLs 12 Previously RETELL Voluntary Mandatory 4 Category Trainings 1 Sheltered English Instruction (SEI) Core Course No credential/endorsement Core subject teachers No SEI MTEL test Infused in some teacher prep programs (not required) Not tied to licensure Not tied to license renewal ESE guidance ELD Standards: ELPBO ELD Assessment: MEPA/MELA-O SEI Endorsement Core subject teachers + Administrators SEI MTEL test (optional) Must be infused in all teacher preparation programs Required for licensure 15 additional PDPs in SEI required for each renewal cycle Oversight by ESE and Dept. of Justice ELD Standards: WIDA ELD Assessment: ACCESS for ELLs Under the RETELL regulations, the following is required by these dates: July 1, 2014: Require all applicants for an initial license as a core academic teacher or as a principal/assistant principal or supervisor/director to meet requirements for SEI Teacher and SEI Administrator Endorsement, respectively. July 1, 2016: Prohibit assignment of a core academic teacher to provide SEI unless the teacher holds an SEI Teacher Endorsement or will obtain one within one year. Take all reasonable steps to make sure that English Language Learners are assigned to core academic teachers with SEI endorsements in subsequent school years. 12 The source for Figure 23 may be found at Source: MA DESE:
37 Professional development plan 24 July 1, 2016: Require a principal/assistant principal or supervisor/director who supervises or evaluates a core academic teacher providing SEI to one or more ELLs to hold an SEI Administrator Endorsement or SEI Teacher Endorsement, or to obtain one within one year. July 1, 2016: Require all educators who seek to renew their professional educator licenses to earn at least 15 Professional Development Points (PDPs) related to SEI or English as a Second Language and at least 15 PDPs related to training in strategies for effective schooling for students with disabilities and instruction of students with diverse learning styles
39 Program evaluation plan Program Evaluation Plan Dover Sherborn Public Schools Massachusetts Department of Education requires that district s develop a plan for evaluating the effectiveness of their ELE programming. We have developed the following process for this purpose. Each fall and spring, the Assistant Superintendent, ELL Coordinator-Teacher, building Principal/Headmaster and others deemed appropriate will meet to review student performance in the ELE program including student performance on: progress reports (in content areas including science, math, social studies, and ESL); reports cards (in content areas including science, math, social studies, and ESL); two-year monitor report of former ELLs; district annual testing used to measure student s English proficiency (IPT testing); state-wide assessments including the WIDA ACCESS and MCAS The review will include an analysis of individual as well as groups of students to determine the effectiveness of the program. The results of this analysis will help to inform our practice. Revisions will be made to better ensure that students are making progress to learn English and academic subject matters successfully.
41 Special education pre-referral, referral and IEP process Special Education Pre-Referral, Referral and IEP Process Every effort will be made to ensure that students receive an educational program that is specifically designed for the English language and subject matter learning needs of students. Several steps will be taken when there is concern that a student who is learning English (ELL) is not making academic progress and/or might have a special education need. 1. Classroom teachers should meet with the student s guidance counselor and ELL Coordinator-Teacher to discuss concerns that he/she has about the student s academic programming. This meeting will occur to ensure that (a) the sheltering of instruction is occurring and (b) that accommodations are being made (including Response to Intervention [RTI]) to assist students in learning English and academic subject matter. This may be in reference to academic, social, cultural and/or emotional concerns. The Assistant Superintendent will be involved in intervention discussions and recommendations. 3. The ELL Coordinator-Teacher will attend all pre-referral meetings for any student enrolled in the ELE program to ensure that the student s language learning needs are being met and that all pre-referral strategies are included. 4. When a student is referred for a special education evaluation, the ELL Coordinator- Teacher will attend referral, IEP, and all other related meetings to ensure that the student s English language and cultural learning needs are addressed and met. 5. Every effort will be made to assess students in their primary/dominant language so that the student s learning needs are best assessed and addressed. This may include a bilingual specialist or bilingual translator. Further, an English tutor will be secured, if needed, when we are unable to secure a bilingual tutor. 6. Bilingual translators will be provided when a parent/guardian is not able to fully communicate in English and/or understand the special education process to ensure that parent/guardian s participate to every extent possible in the pre-referral, referral, and IEP process of their child. 7. Bilingual translators will provide oral and/or written translations of IEPs to ensure that parents/guardians are appropriately informed about this plan. 8. Special education programs for students with disabilities and who are English Language Learners shall be completely unaffected. If a student with disabilities has an IEP or a 504 Plan that requires instruction to be provided to the student in a language other than English, then the district must comply with the IEP and 504 Plan in this regard and no waiver is required. Further, a student is not eligible for special education services if the determinant factor for eligibility determination is limited English proficiency (MA DOE Questions and Answers regarding laws and regulations.
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