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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Struggling Schools Benefit from Adding Arts to Learning

At ReNEW Cultural Arts Academy, students put their multiplication tables to song, while eighth graders use the musical "Hamilton" to study debate. The public charter school's curriculum is a product of a federal effort to use arts education to boost achievement in the nation's lowest performing schools. Jeffrey Brown reports.

From Hashtag to Movement to Book: #WeNeedDiverseBooks Publishes First Anthology

Since 2014, the hashtag #WeNeedDiverseBooks has grown into the We Need Diverse Books (WNDB) nonprofit organization supporting diversity in children's literature with special events, panel discussions, writing contests, grant awards, mentorships, resources for teachers and librarians, and now, its first book — "Flying Lessons & Other Stories," a middle-grade anthology for children ages 8 to 12 released this week by Crown Books for Young Readers. The anthology features award-winning authors Kwame Alexander, Soman Chainani, Matt de la Peña, Tim Federle, Grace Lin, Meg Medina, Tim Tingle, and Jacqueline Woodson.

California Said Yes to Bilingual Education. Now What?

Now that voters have passed Proposition 58, school districts and principals across the state are trying to figure out whether to grow bilingual education programs – and if so, how. Three experts talk about what should happen next.

Educators: Parents Will Drive New Bilingual Education Growth

Proposition 58, the successful ballot initiative to overturn bilingual education limits in California, goes into effect in July of this year. Among other things, schools no longer will be required to have parents sign a waiver for their kids to enroll in bilingual programs and district officials will no longer be limited to the amount of native language instructors use to help English learners.  The increasing role of parents in this policy change comes as state education leaders have given parents a greater role in school district policy by building parent input into school district budgeting reforms known as Local Control Funding Formula.

Stevenson Educators Look to Service 'Unbelievable' Number of Seniors with Immigrant Parents

Ali Saeed is a part of the 41 percent of seniors at Stevenson High School in Illinois whose parents are college educated but attended universities outside the U.S., according to a school survey. The large percentage of students in the Class of 2017 recently has caught the attention of Stevenson educators, who were surprised to find that more and more students at the Lincolnshire-based high school are coming from families with that specific background. Patty Martin, assistant director of student services at Stevenson, said that school officials were startled to find that a little less than half of the Class of 2017 had parents who attended a university in another nation. "We thought maybe it was 10 percent," she said.

'I have the United Nations in my room,' Adult ESL Teacher Says

DMACC English as a Second Language teacher Vidal Spaine helps immigrants from around the world assimilate in Des Moines, Iowa through ESL classes. He's grateful for the help he received in much the same way that helped pave his success in this country.

The Obama Administration's Imprint on K-12 Policy: A Roundup

Education Week’s Alyson Klein takes a look at the major education policy initiatives and issues implemented and addressed under President Barack Obama, their impact and what they might look like in the future.  Her review includes Race to the Top, immigration, civil rights, and early childhood education.

Seattle Boosts Support for Immigrant Families and Students

The City of Seattle plans to boost counseling resources in public schools for immigrant and refugee students, particularly those who are undocumented or Muslim. Officials announced the effort Friday as part of a larger plan to assist families who may face new challenges under the Trump administration.

UCLA Study Offers "Counter Narrative" on Black, Latino Male Achievement

News stories often state that black and Latino males have lower test scores and graduation rates than their white and Asian peers and that they're more likely to be disciplined in school and be incarcerated. UCLA professor Tyrone Howard decided to produce a report that offers a different perspective. Howard and his team interviewed 201 black and Latino high-school aged males at seven schools is the Los Angeles area. The teens had a 2.5 GPA or higher and were identified by their teachers as having exhibited talent, leadership or resilience in school. When asked to define themselves, the most commonly used word was "hardworking." The report offers multiple suggestions for ways schools can support success based on the responses of the black and Latino males studied.