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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Back to School Means First Visits to the Library!

For book lovers, the library is the best place in town. For young children who have never entered that space, the shelves seem endless, the stacks are tall, and they have no idea where to begin. These eight books comprise a love letter to libraries to help newcomers get their bearings. They're only a start.

What Teacher-Preparation Enrollment Looks Like, in Charts

How many people are pursuing careers as teachers? A new analysis looks at nearly 15 years of teacher-preparation program enrollment data to find out. The data reveals a significant national decline in enrollment that now seems to be leveling out. Still, the number of education students in the United States declined by about a quarter of a million between 2008 and 2020.

An Alaska district aligns its school year with traditional subsistence harvests

Seventy miles inland from the Bering Sea, on roadless lands beside the Kuskokwim River, three Yup'ik villages are perfect examples of the educational challenges faced in Alaska. This year, the district was allowed to operate on an academic calendar that's aligned with seasonal subsistence harvests. School leaders spent much of 2022 working to get it approved by the state.

One Detroit school’s multilayered effort to get absent students back to school

After missing four days of classes last fall at Gompers Elementary-Middle School, Jay’Sean Hull was called into the cafeteria with 100 other students with similar attendance records. The group was introduced to attendance agent Effie Harris, a key figure in the school’s efforts to improve on a dismal statistic. The previous school year, a staggering 82% of students in the northwest Detroit school were chronically absent, meaning they missed 18 or more days. Harris explained that the students had been selected for a relatively new program pairing students at risk of becoming chronically absent with 20 adult mentors in the building. 

After her old Denver school was closed, one 7-year-old was excited and nervous to start anew

Just before 7 a.m. Monday, the first day of school in Denver Public Schools, 7-year-old Sara sat on her family’s couch, velcroing brand-new sneakers so glittery that when she ran her hand over the outside, sparkles clung to her fingertips. Sara was excited despite a big change. Her old school, Fairview Elementary, was one of three schools closed by DPS this past spring because of low enrollment — a persistent problem caused by lower birth rates and high housing prices that have pushed families out of the city.

As classes resume in sweltering heat, many schools lack air conditioning

This year the Philadelphia school district is starting the school year later than normal. A decision that Oz Hill, the district's Chief Operating Officer, said was made to "reduce the likelihood that extreme temperatures would impact our ability to provide in-person instruction." As in many districts, school leaders in Philadelphia know that inadequate AC is a problem, but finding solutions can be complicated. Hitchner's school, for example, was supposed to get AC years ago.

A wave of child care center closures is coming as funding dries up

Since the pandemic, nearly 16,000 early childhood programs have shuttered. Between January 2020 and January 2022, around 120,000 child care workers left the industry, many for higher paying jobs, leading to immense staffing shortages and soaring waiting lists for parents who were unable to return to work full-time due to a lack of care. Educators and experts say the federal relief aid prevented the situation from getting worse. Those funds helped keep more than 200,000 early childhood programs open and more than 1 million early childhood educators employed, thus allowing more than 9.5 million children to receive care. When the federal stabilization funds run out at the end of September and child care providers can no longer rely on this much-needed funding, experts say the consequences could be immense. A recent report by The Century Foundation, a progressive think tank, found an estimated 3.2 million children will eventually lose child care if those federal funds are not replaced.