ELL News Headlines

Throughout the week, Colorín Colorado gathers news headlines related to English language learners from around the country. The ELL Headlines are posted Monday through Friday and are available for free!

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Leaders to Learn From: Angela Ward, A Leader in Cultural Proficiency

Claiming a city — or a school — is inclusive doesn’t make it so, says Angela Ward, the supervisor of race and equity programs in the Austin Independent school district. Building environments where everyone feels valued and supported takes a commitment to challenging, thoughtful work, she believes. Ward, a Texas native and former teacher, offers professional development opportunities for teachers and administrators, helping them to understand the way their own identities affect how they teach, interact with students, and lead schools. And she works with community organizations interested in equity to represent the interests of students and to build cooperative programs. And her work complements and enhances the district’s efforts to promote social-emotional learning.

Central Falls, RI to Introduce Dual-Language Program

Superintendent Victor Capellan announced the creation of a dual language school in Central Falls beginning in fall 2019. Capellan told NBC 10 News that he wants to utilize the diversity of the student body in the city.

Tucson educators hail change in state rules on how English-language learners are taught

Since the late 2000s, Arizona has required English language learners to spend hours of their school day, every day, segregated from the rest of the student body in what has come to be known as the English-only language development block. Last Thursday, however, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed a bill that eliminates the four-hour block model and gives districts far more autonomy in how they instruct ELL students in Arizona's public schools. Patricia Sandoval-Taylor, the director of language acquisition services in the Tucson Unified School District, said that quashing the four-hour block, specifically, has been a top lobbying priority for the district in the last few years because the block severely hindered high school ELL students' ability to achieve academically and graduate on time. Under the previous block model, students could not earn content credit and would end up failing or dropping out of school because they were so far behind on credits.