Washington: ELL Resources

Map of Washington

As of the 2016-2017 school year, Washington’s schools were home to over 122,000 English language learners. As of the 2014-2015 school year, the most common five languages spoken by ELLs in Washington were Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Somali, and Chinese. (U.S. Dept. of Education, National Center for Education Statistics)

State ELL Resources

State Agency: State of Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction

ELL Websites:

ELL Identification

Assessment: ELPA21

Home Language Survey: A Home Language Survey is provided on the ELL website. Translations are also available in multiple languages.

Parent Notifications: Parent documents are currently available in multiple languages on the state website.

ELP Standards

ELP Standards: ELPA21

Statewide Standards-Based Assessment

Assessment: Measurements of Student Progress

ELL Accommodations: Accommodations and Assessment Information

Additional Information

NCELA: Title III Information

Common Core State Standards: Yes

ESSA: Washington ESSA State Plan

Statewide Organizations

AFT Washington

AFT Washington is a state federation affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO. We represent about 4,500 members including faculty from community and technical colleges and pre-K.

Washington Association for the Education of Speakers of Other Languages

WAESOL, the Washington state affiliate to Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), is a professional, non-profit organization whose purpose is to serve members of the ESL community in the state of Washington.

Washington Education Association

Washington Education Association is a National Education Association State Affiliate that regularly lobbies legislators for the resources schools need, campaigns for higher professional standards for the teaching profession, and files legal actions to protect academic freedom and the rights of school employees.

Partnerships for Action, Voices for Empowerment (PAVE)

A parent organization providing support, training and informational resources to empower families and individuals with disabilities.

Washington: Seal of Biliteracy

Washington State adopted the Seal of Biliteracy in 2014. The Seal of Biliteracy is an award given by a school, district, or state in recognition of students who have studied and attained proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation.

Research and Reports

Note: Regulations change with time. These guidelines were compiled in January of 2012 and updated in January 2020. If you see something that needs updating, please send an e-mail to Colorín Colorado. For more detailed information regarding ELL guidelines and policies at the state and federal levels, please see the following:


National Center for Education Statistics. (2018.) English language learner (ELL) students enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools, by state: Selected years, fall 2000 through fall 2016. 

U.S. Department of Education. Our Nation’s English Learners. Most Common Non-English Languages Spoken by English Learners.