English Learners (ELs) in Gadsden City Schools
What languages do ELs in Gadsden City Schools speak?
For the school year 2020-2021 we have 11 different languages. They are Acateco, Arabic, Chinese, Creole, Ewe, French, Khanjobal, Mandigo, Spanish, Urdu and Vietnamese.
There are no barriers to registration in the Gadsden City Schools (GCS).
How ELs are identified
- The first step in placement is the Home Language Survey, completed at registration.
- If English is the second language of the student or if the student communicates at home primarily in a different language, the student is given the WIDA ACCESS Placement Test to determine eligibility. This test measures a student’s proficiency level in speaking, listening, reading, and writing.
- Students have to be tested within the first 30 days of school if they enroll on the first day. Any student that enrolls after the 1st day of school has 10 days to be tested.
- Students who are eligible for the ESL program (Title III) are assigned an ELP Level 1-5 based on results of their language proficiency assessment.
- The language progress of students is measured in the spring of each year with the WIDA ACCESS test.
- 4.8 is the exit score on the ACCESS. Students who exit from the EL program are monitored for 4 years.
Assessment for ELs
ACCESS for ELs (Assessing Comprehension and Communication in English State-to-State for English Language Learners) is a secure large-scale English Language Proficiency Assessment given to Kindergarten through 12th graders who have been identified as English Learners (ELs). It is given annually in WIDA consortium member states to monitor students’ progress in acquiring academic English. Students must achieve a score of 4.8 to exit ESL.
Core EL Program
The primary program of instruction used by Gadsden City Schools is English as a Second Language (ESL).
ESL is a program of techniques, methodology, and special curriculum designed to teach ELs explicitly about the English language, including the academic vocabulary needed to access content instruction, and to develop their English language proficiency in all four language domains.
In addition to sheltered instruction, interventionists and ESL teachers deliver language development services through both Pull-Out and/or Push-In instructional approaches.
In this approach, students are taken out of their mainstream classroom, in the same facility, for a scheduled time with an interventionist or ESL teacher to receive English language development instruction. Interventionist, who may or may not be bilingual will provide the pull-out instruction. The focus of instruction is on English language development which promotes content area comprehension.
The same goals are applied as in ESL Pull-out; however, an interventionist or ESL Teacher will provide instruction by working with ELs in the regular classroom.
These programs will be implemented in various ways to best meet the needs of ELs in Gadsden City Schools. Instruction in the EL program will be provided by qualified and appropriately trained teachers. The EL program will be evaluated annually and changes will be made as needed to ensure that the best program is being implemented.
The program for English language learners is designed to assist them in learning English as well as meeting state content standards. Curriculum follows grade level standards and the English Language Proficiency (ELP) standards of World Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA) Consortium. Instruction is adapted to the student’s ELP to assist in meeting the state academic content and achievement standards that all students are expected to meet.
ELP standards of World Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA) Consortium.
- Standard 1: English language learners communicate for social and instructional purposes.
- Standard 2: English language learners communicate for academic success in the content area of Language Arts.
- Standard 3: English language learners communicate for academic success in the content area of Mathematics.
- Standard 4: English language learners communicate for academic success in the content area of Science.
- Standard 5: English language learners communicate for academic success in the content area of Social Studies.