ELL Policy Survey: Results

Our policy section is made possible by a generous grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York

In September 2011, Colorín Colorado launched an informal ELL policy survey online.

Some highlights from the survey results follow below. 46 educators from 20+ states answered questions about their own district policies and shared questions about state and federal policies.

Survey results

Which of the following best describes your role?

  • 54.5% — ESL educator
  • 20.5% — ELL program director
  • 9.1% — Classroom teacher
  • 6.8% — Higher education faculty
  • 6.8% — Bilingual educator

What age are the students that you work with? Check all that apply.

  • 71.7% — Early elementary
  • 67.4% — Kindergarten
  • 63.0% — Upper elementary
  • 45.7% — Middle school
  • 39.1% — High school

Which state is your district in?

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • District of Columbia
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia

My district has this kind of policy.

  • 49.3% — Language policy
  • 82.9% — ELL assessment policy
  • 39.0% — ELL grading policy
  • 92.7% — ELL program exit policy

Content/classroom teachers are aware of this policy.

  • 48.0% — Language policy
  • 76.0% — ELL assessment policy
  • 52.0% — ELL grading policy
  • 60% — ELL program exit policy

Administrators are actively involved in writing this policy.

  • 78.6% — Language policy
  • 78.6% — ELL assessment policy
  • 42.9% — ELL grading policy
  • 78.6% — ELL program exit policy

What kinds of ELL data does your school district track?

  • 93.0% — Proficiency level
  • 83.7% — ELL program exit information
  • 83.7% — Home language(s)
  • 83.7% — Student assessments: Formal/State-wide
  • 60% — Attendance
  • 53.5% — Student assessments: Instructional/Classroom-based
  • 51.2% — Socio-economic status
  • 46.5% — Grades
  • 46.5% — Graduation rates

Other:

  • "'Subgroups' which can overlap such as free and reduced lunch, special education, Hispanic, ESL"
  • "Writing portfolios"
  • "We have an ESL data team that keeps track of proficiency levels, formal/state-wide assessments and ELL program exit information. The state requires that attendance be tracked, I think."

Which of the following activities have you participated in on behalf of your ELLs?

  • 84.6% — Led professional development at the school or district level
  • 74.4% — Connected ELL students and families with community/social/medical services
  • 71.8% — Served on a school- or district-wide committee as an "ELL voice"
  • 48.7% — Attended school board meetings
  • 25.6% — Wrote a letter to a lawmaker
  • 12.8% — Visited local/state lawmakers
  • 10.3% — Wrote a letter to the editor

Other/Examples

  • Presentations to Reading Association and state ESL conferences
  • Interact with ELL State Ed. Board Members personally and via email.
  • Provide parent outreach, technology and literacy development for ELL community
  • Started a program to teach and empower parents to learn English along with parenting skills and life skills. At the same time children were being tutored in an adjacent classroom.
  • Work on the Latino Education Advisory Council on behalf of students including ELLs.

Which policies do you think affect have the strongest impact on your work with ELLs?

  • 71.7% — District/local program policies
  • 60.9% — State policies
  • 39.1% — Federal education policies
  • 37.0% — Teacher quality/evaluation policies

Comments

  • "The oversight by the state, for good or bad, drives a lot of what we do as a district. I would be interested in information about how states interpret federal rules and regulations and how that often looks quite different state to state."
  • "When parents are empowered they can contribute meaningfully to ensuring quality language instruction. Many times they are not empowered and language programs are cut without their knowing."

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