Essential Elements of Effective Practices for English Learners

Author: Karen Cadiero Kaplan
Organization: Center for Equity and Biliteracy Education Research, San Diego State University. Magaly Lavadenz & Elvira G. Armas, Center for Equity for English Learners, Loyola Marymount University with the Teachers Effectiveness Work Group, Calif

One of the most powerful variables for English Learner success is the quality of their teachers. The lack of consistent and focused research-based professional development and preparation for teachers of English Learners (ELs) is a major contributing factor to the lack of adequate language and academic development. This policy brief (1) provides a synthesis of effective practices for instructing ELs; (2) presents four research-based essential elements critical for EL program implementation, teacher reflection, and monitoring of teacher effectiveness; and (3) concludes with program and policy recommendations. Three key areas for policy action are prioritized: 1) District and state level policies must require that local and state leadership support the implementation of these essential elements, and 2) Alignment of fiscal and human resources must be targeted to ensure that teachers are provided with professional development, materials and curricular program supports required to implement these key elements leading to English learner success. 3) Teacher preparation and credential requirements need to incorporate the four critical elements of effective practice for success with English Learners.


Karen Cadiero Kaplan, Magaly Lavadenz & Elvira G. Armas. (December 2011). Essential Elements of Effective Practices for English Learners.