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!

Get these headlines sent to you weekly!

To receive our free weekly newsletter of the week's stories, sign up on our Newsletters page. You can also embed our ELL News Widget.

Note: These links may expire after a week or so, and some websites require you to register first before seeing an article. Colorín Colorado does not necessarily endorse these views or any others on these outside web sites.

12 Ways to Support Afghan Refugee Students

Larry Ferlazzo collects responses to the question: "It's possible that a number of schools might be welcoming Afghan refugee students soon. How can teachers/schools/districts best support them?"

Children's Mental Health Gets Millions In Federal Funding

As students head back into another pandemic school year, the Biden administration is announcing millions in new funding for mental health awareness, training, and treatment. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra is expected to announce the funds at Children's Hospital New Orleans on Friday morning.

All-Latina speech team at Santa Ana High School wins top award at nationals

They waited with bated breath, hoping the moment for when all the hard work of practicing and performing their speeches had finally paid off — and it did, despite a global pandemic. "I watched them in their final round as they were competing in front of the computer, and I was just crying just because I was so happy, because I knew what that meant for them," said Corin Serrano, coach of Santa Ana High School's speech team.

NYC schools are getting 200 new murals. At this Bronx campus, painting provides connections after COVID’s isolation.

It was a cool day for August, which was lucky for the five students busy painting a mural in a courtyard of asphalt and brick. After a long period of learning alone from computer screens, the students were working together to add a burst of color to their school building in the West Bronx, the Theatre Arts Production Company School, or TAPCo. The mural is one of about 200 going up at schools across New York City, funded by $25,000 grants to each school through the city’s Artist Corps, a recovery program through the Department of Cultural Affairs that has sent nearly 400 artists to summer school sites. Mayor Bill de Blasio has touted the corps as reminiscent of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, which funded arts and cultural projects to help lift the country out of the Great Depression.

Natalia Benjamin becomes first educator of Latin American heritage to win Minnesota Teacher of the Year

Natalia Benjamin’s love of learning languages started early. Growing up in Guatemala City, the native Spanish speaker attended a French school. English became her third language when she started learning it in middle school. Now, Benjamin teaches English language learners and ethnic studies at Rochester’s Century High School. And on Wednesday night, in a ceremony under a white canopy on the lawn of the State Capitol, she was named Minnesota’s 2021 Teacher of the Year. She is the first teacher of Latin American heritage to win the prestigious honor.

Gates Foundation Targets Culturally Responsive Math Teaching With New Grants

Over the next two years, 11 organizations will each be granted up to $1 million to improve Algebra outcomes for Black and Latino students, English-language learners, and students experiencing poverty. These grants are courtesy of the Gates Foundation, through its Grand Challenges platform—an initiative that targets persistent challenges in global health and development.

Webinar: Supporting English-Learners This Fall: Focus on Assets, Not Deficits


The country’s 5 million English-language learner-students—three-quarters of whom speak Spanish as their home language, federal data show—faced unique challenges during the periods of remote schooling last year. Some worry that these students may have regressed in their English skills during that time. But experts say that these students also experienced potential benefits from spending more time at home immersed in their families’ languages and cultures. They say teachers will need to give English-learners proper support going forward, which includes ensuring they are learning language within content and not in isolation; doing holistic assessments that take into account any gains made in home languages; and most importantly, avoiding assumptions on how much or how little progress was made in English-language skills.

This upcoming webinar on 8/25 at 2pm ET explores these and other support strategies for educators working with English-learners this fall.