K-12 Lau (ELL) Plan for Serving English Learners (Els)


Clinton Community School District

K-12 Lau (ELL) Plan for Serving English Learners (ELs)

April 17, 2014

(Required Lau (ELL) leadership team members: District Administrator, Dave Bloom and ELL Teachers, Olga Cyphers and Abby Gravert

Lau (ELL) Plan

The district plan designed to meet the instructional needs of ELs is referred to as the Lau (ELL) Plan (Lau v. Nichols, 1974). The Lau (ELL) plan is collaboratively written by the K-12 team identified above. This detailed narrative includes the following required critical elements:

I.  Language Instruction Educational Program (LIEP) goals

o  Linguistic development

o  Academic achievement

o  Other

II.  Identification of ELs

o  Home Language Survey (www.TransAct.com, Form A)

o  Initial placement assessment – TELPA plus additional measures

o  Parental notification of eligibility and placement, in language most easily understood

o  Process to place student in appropriate LIEPs

o  Process in place for identifying and serving gifted ELs

o  Process in place for identifying and serving ELs in special education

o  Other

III.  Placement of ELs in appropriate programming designed to meet developmental linguistic needs

o  Annual parental notification of continuing placement and programming options

IV.  Language Instruction Educational Program (LIEP) program models implemented in the district

o  Highly qualified staff

o  Designated administrator oversight for LIEPs

o  Access to Common Core and English Language Development (ELD) Standards

V.  Ongoing professional development for all staff targeting EL needs

VI.  English language development assessment and administration

o  Annual training to appropriate staff

o  Dissemination of scores to stakeholders

o  Provide appropriate training to interpret results to staff

o  Use results to guide instruction and programming

VII.  LIEP transition and exit criteria

VIII.  Monitoring procedures after students exit the program

IX.  LIEP evaluation

Plan for Serving English Learners

All school districts in Iowa are required to be “on alert” and ready for English Learners (ELs) who may enroll in their schools. As a result, each district is responsible for developing an authentic Lau Plan. The Lau Plan serves as guidance for addressing the linguistic needs of ELs and for implementing appropriate programming designed to reduce linguistic barriers to the Core instructional program.

The Lau Plan will help schools prepare required policy and plans, choose and implement an appropriate program model, ensure that ELs are included in the Core educational program, and assist parents of ELs to participate in their children’s education.

Lau Plan

Federal legislation requires every school district to have a program plan in place to serve ELs, regardless of whether they have ELs yet enrolled. The plan must ensure that immediately upon enrollment, the EL has access to a specialized language instruction educational program (LIEP). The plan for meeting the linguistic needs of ELs must provide resources to support the LIEP and the academic achievement of ELs, using state and local funds.

Lau Plan Requirements for English Learners

The Iowa Department of Education requires that all school districts report their plan to identify and serve ELs in accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act to the Department of Education. This required plan is embedded in the annual C Plan submitted by districts. A Lau Plan ensures that there is an approved process in place for the identification of ELs, as well as a plan to begin English language development services for such students immediately upon enrollment. In addition, the Lau Plan includes screening procedures and the plan for administering an annual assessment of the students’ English language development.

Lau Plan

The district plan to meet the instructional needs of English Learners is referred to as the Lau Plan (Lau v. Nichols, 1974). The Lau (ELL) plan includes the following elements:

• LIEP goals

• Identification of English Learners

• Placement of English learners in LIEP designed to meet linguistic needs

• Background on the LIEP models implemented in the district

• Ongoing professional development for staff targeting EL needs

• English language development assessment and administration

• LIEP transition exit criteria

• Monitoring procedures after students exit the program

• LIEP evaluation

I.  K-12 District LIEP Goals

What are the linguistic goals of the district’s LIEP?

·  Teaching English language comprehension through listening, speaking, reading and writing skills to attain English proficiency and academic competence by providing high quality language instruction.

·  Promoting pride in students’ cultural and linguistic backgrounds

What are the academic goals of the district’s LIEP?

·  To educate all students to their highest level of achievement through engaging curriculum in a caring community

·  Encouraging parental involvement in schools and children’s education

·  Educating ELs to meet the same challenging academic content and student academic achievement that all children are expected to meet

Iowa educators are actively responding to the unique needs of ELs. The goals of our LIEP are aligned with Title III of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, the Iowa Department of Education publication, Educating Iowa’s ELs: A Handbook for Administrators and Teachers, and the Iowa Teaching Standards and Criteria. Since the number of ELs in our classrooms is increasing, ALL teachers have a crucial opportunity and responsibility to address their instructional needs.

II.  Identification of ELs

Chapter 280, Section 280.4 of the Iowa Code defines a Limited English Proficient student as follows, “A student’s background is in a language other than English, and the student’s proficiency in English is such that the probability of the student’s academic success in an English-only classroom is below that of an academically successful peer with an English background.”

To identify and serve limited English proficient students, districts are required to do the following:

Home Language Survey

All families are asked to complete a Home Language Survey (281—60.3(1)a) during registration. A positive response on this survey does not itself identify a student as an English language learner; it helps to screen students for potential consideration.

The district is prepared to conduct oral or native language interviews in the student’s home language with those adults who may not have sufficient English or literacy skills to complete a survey written in English (281—60.3(1)).

Families registering children will be assisted in completing documents and registration materials on-site as needed. If home language assistance is necessary in order to secure accurate data, every reasonable attempt will be made to provide this support. The Home Language Survey is included in Materials Packet in the district’s registration.

Clinton Community School District uses the www.TransACT.com survey Form A.

The Home Language Survey is provided to parents in a language they can understand. The Student Services Director screens the completed Home Language Surveys to verify if a language other than English is represented.

Completed Home Language Surveys are placed in the student’s cumulative folder.

Clinton Community School District created a welcoming environment for students and their families. Artifacts, posters, national flags, and pictures from cultures represented by students demonstrate value and appreciation of students’ cultural background.

Identification and Placement

Identification and placement of ELL students is a collaborative process involving parents, the enrollment secretary, and the ELL teacher at the students’ grade level. There is a 30 day screening timeline for students registering at the beginning of the school year and a two week timeline for students registering after the beginning of the school year. Our ELL teachers have been trained in the administration of the TELPA. If the student is non-English proficient or limited proficient in any of the English language development subtests (speaking, listening, reading and writing) or there is evidence that he/she will not be successful in the regular classroom because of language background, the student is identified for the LIEP. Based on assessment results, the ELL student should be assigned to mainstreamed classrooms with students the same chronological age, with no more than two years difference (60.3(3)a).

The steps and persons responsible are listed below.

Step / Action / Person Responsible
1 / During enrollment for all new students, parents fill out a Home Language Survey to indicate if a language other than English is spoken in the home. The Home Language Survey is included in the district’s registration packet. The survey will be provided in a language that the parent(s) can understand. / parents/ enrollment secretary
2 / Send home language survey, phone numbers,
and pertinent information to the student Services Director for initial screening. / enrollment secretary
3 / If a need is indicated, the Home Language Survey is scanned and emailed to the appropriate grade level ELL teacher. If the student is determined not to be a potential ELL student under the district’s criteria, no special ELL services are required. The Home Language Survey is archived. / Student Services Director
4 / Call parents to arrange to test the student's language proficiency / ELL teacher
5 / Have parents sign "Permission to Test" form / ELL teacher / parents
6 / Administer the TELPA placement test / ELL teacher / student
7 / Score the test to determine status:
not proficient, limited proficient, or fully proficient. Potential ELL students are assessed for academic skills. The ELL teacher and Student Services Director review the results and then share results with the parents for a placement decision. Information from prior student records, teacher interview, parent information, teacher observation, referral, student grades or informal assessments may be included in deciding placement. / ELL teacher
8 / Notify parents of the need of ELL services -
have parents sign parent notification of ELL services. A copy of the parent notification of ELL services will be placed in the student’s temporary record and kept with the ELL teacher. Parents are notified of program placement no later than 30 calendar days after the beginning of the school year, or if a child enrolls after the beginning of the year, within two weeks. / ELL teacher
9 / Notify enrollment secretary of student's status / ELL teacher
10 / If ELL, add student to spreadsheet of current ELL students / ELL teacher
11 / Note student's ELL status on official school records / enrollment secretary
12 / Arrange bussing to appropriate ELL school if necessary / building secretary / bus barn
13 / Notify parents of student's first day of school,
arrange to meet them at school that morning / ELL teacher
14 / Notify parents of bus number and pickup / drop off times / ELL teacher
15 / Meet parents at school, show classroom, get student settled / ELL teacher, counselor
16 / Group student with other ELLs at appropriate
level/grade and begin teaching / ELL teacher
17 / Monitor student's abilities and progress in regular classroom; adjust placement / status if necessary / ELL teacher / classroom teacher

TAG or Special Education Considerations

EL students are identified for TAG or Special Education the same way as native English speakers. They are placed into TAG based on Iowa Assessment scores and into Special Education through the district RTI (Response to Intervention) process.

The process that is used to determine if learning struggles are due to a language difference or a disability takes into consideration the students’ cultural background, language proficiency and development in first and second languages, prior schooling and parent interview. When prevention and early intervention strategies fail to resolve learning difficulties, referral to special education is warranted. The responsibilities of special education referral committees are similar to those of TATs. The primary difference is that referral committees include a variety of specialists, such as principals, special education teachers, and assessment personnel. These specialists bring their expertise to bear on the problem, especially in areas related to assessment, diagnosis, and specialized instruction. Decisions of the referral committee are formed by data gathered through the prevention, early intervention, and referral processes.

Therefore, before a student can be served in Special Education, he or she should be assessed in the first language to determine whether the suspected condition exists in the language and cultural context with which the student is most familiar and comfortable. A suspected speech disorder, for example, that does not appear in the first language can be assumed to be a natural characteristic of second-language acquisition. Consequently, the student should be referred for English as a Second Language instruction.

Program Placement of ELs in appropriate programming designed to meet developmental linguistic needs

Step #1: Assessment of English Language Proficiency within the first thirty calendar days of the student’s arrival (NCLB, Sec. 3302[a]) or, if the child enters after the beginning of the school year, within two weeks (NCLB, Sec. 3302.[d]).

The district uses the TELPA for identifying EL’s. The district ELL teachers are trained to administer the TELPA. The assessments are then kept in the student’s cumulative folder.

Step #2: Assessment of academic skills, in relation to the student’s grade or age level (281-60.3(1) b).

The designated staff member to administer assessments of academic skills is either the classroom teacher or the ELL teacher based on accommodations required.

The district assessments given are: DIBELS (Kindergarten-1st grades), Iowa Assessments (2nd-11th grades), NWEA (2nd-8th grades)

Methods of Instruction

Instruction of ELLs is a collaborative process involving ELL teachers, school counselors, general education teachers, and para-educators. ELL students’ language and academic abilities vary considerably and are continually progressing. Because of this, decisions regarding the specific instruction each student is to receive are determined on an individual basis.

Some methods of instruction implemented are summarized in the following table.

Instructional Strategy / Level / Person Responsible
Small group instruction / K-12 / ELL Teacher
Regular Ed. Teacher
One-on-one instruction / K-12 / ELL Teacher
After School Programs
Sheltered Content Courses / 6-12 / ELL Teacher
Team taught courses utilizing ESL methodology / K-5 / ELL Teacher
General Ed. Teacher
Instruction adapted to the proficiency level
of the ELL to support grade level
instruction in the content area / K-12 / ELL Teacher, General Ed. Teacher
Instruction in phonics, spelling, and of the English Language / K-12 / ELL Teacher
Basic interpersonal communication skills (BICS) and vocabulary for newcomers / K-12 / ELL Teacher
Instruction in cultural differences and biculturalism / K-12 / ELL Teacher
Extended time for testing and assignments / K-12 / Regular Ed. Teacher
ELL Teacher
Tutoring of ELLs / K-12 / Para-Educator
After School Programs
ELL support in regular education classroom / K-12 / ELL Teacher, Para-Educator
Computer-aided instruction (Rosetta Stone Software and web based resources) / K-12 / Regular Ed. Teacher
ELL Teacher
Translation and materials in native language, where appropriate and available / K-12 / ELL Teacher, District Interpreter/Translator
Modification of assignments to accommodate for language proficiency / K-12 / Regular Ed. Teacher
ELL Teacher

Sheltered Content courses that can be provided at the secondary level are: ESL US History, ESL World History, ESL American Government, ESL Composition, and ESL Literature. New courses may be added based on student needs.