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English Language Learners (ELs)

Helen Duranleau-Brennan
Title III Consultant

Pam McDonnell (ED)
Iowa DE consultant

Service Description:

Purpose of this service is:

  1. To assist districts/schools having low incidence of ELs students with identification and placement of newly enrolled non-English-speaking students. Guidance is provided on how the district can meet NCLB requirements in regard to educating ELs students.
  2. To assist districts/schools with large ELs populations with issues regarding:
    1. Compliance with Iowa and NCLB requirements
    2. Assessment for English and academic proficiency
    3. Improvement of existing ESL programming
    4. Information on staff development opportunities for ESL teachers
    5. Latest news and information from the Iowa Department of Education related to ELs issues 

Agency Goal:
To increase English language proficiency and academic achievement of language minority students in Reading, Math, and Science.

On Line ELs Goals and Standards for:
Grades PK-3
Grades 4-8
Grades 9-12

Iowa Department of Education web pages:

  • Educating Iowa's English Language Learners
    (A handbook for Administrators and Teachers)
  • ELs Determination Letter 4-20-09 
  • Enrollment Status Descriptors - 2007
  • District ELs Self-Study Guide (This guide is designed to provide the district/building with a comprehensive review of its ELs practices and procedures)
  • Guidelines for Implementing English Language Proficiency Standards in Iowa

Iowa Guidelines for K-12 ELs Participation in Districtwide Assessments (2011-2012)
Document Overview: Per federal requirements, each state education agency (SEA) is required to have in place guidelines for including and accommodating English language learners (ELs*) in assessments of mathematics, reading, and science used to measure student Adequate Yearly Progress. The Iowa Department of Education (DE) has worked in coordination with Title III Subgrantees (Area Education Agencies and the Waterloo and Des Moines School Districts) to develop the following guidelines.

  • Part I of the guidelines provides federal and state requirements for ELs inclusion and accommodation in districtwide assessments of mathematics, reading, and science.
  • Part II of the guidelines provide research-based and recommended best practice guidance on the accommodation of ELs in these districtwide assessments.
  • These guidelines do not address the accommodation of ELs in the I-ELDA, a separate test ELs take to gauge student’s English language proficiency.

United States Department of Education web pages:

TESOL information and services, membership, and journals

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