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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SF Public Library's Quest to Put Diversity on Shelves

A new San Francisco Public Library program, We Love Diverse Books includes 50 events during January to broaden the scope of what patrons read, including author discussions, cooking lessons and manga art workshops. The program emphasizes the importance of "literary mirrors," where readers see themselves and their identities reflected in the books they read.

Education Week Coverage of Betsy Devos Confirmation Hearing

Betsy DeVos, Donald Trump's pick to lead the U.S. Department of Education, sought to use her confirmation hearing to beat back the notion that she would undermine public education as head of the department, as Democrats pressed her on everything from her views on the civil rights of gay and lesbian students, to states' responsibilities for students in special education, and guns in schools. 

Grant Enables Penn State College of Education to Help English Learners in Hazleton, PA

As the Penn State College of Education's relationship with the community of Hazleton and its school district continues to expand, so do opportunities for the city's English learners. The U.S. Department of Education's Office of English Language Acquisition awarded Penn State a five-year, $2.1 million grant that is intended, among other things, to foster ambitious science and language teaching practices in Hazleton elementary classrooms that contribute to English learners' academic success.

Tribal Students Sue Feds Over 'Shock the Conscience' Schooling Conditions

Nine children from an Arizona tribe are suing the federal government, alleging that they, and other children enrolled in Bureau of Indian Education schools across the country have been routinely denied the right to a basic education. Ranging in age from six to 15, the children are members of the Havasupai tribe based in and around the Grand Canyon's South Rim. Their complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Arizona, names the Bureau of Indian Education and the U.S. Interior Department as defendants.

You're the Reason I Come to School Every Day

School talk today is generally around rigorous content and 21st-century skills and how we can measure those to make schools accountable. There is, however, a much more powerful, if subtle, set of factors that makes going to school worthwhile for both students and teachers. Any teacher-student relationship involves a whole cluster of things going on: trust, motivation, purpose, persistence, curiosity.  Humor--and joy. Multiply that by 30--or 150--students every day.

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.