Special Programs & Services
School districts in Texas are required by state law to assess the English language proficiency of all students whose Home Language Survey indicates that the home language is a language other than English.
If a child demonstrates limited English proficiency on the state-approved assessment, s/he will be eligible for enrollment in the appropriate language program: Bilingual education or English as a Second Language (ESL). The goal of both programs is to enable English language learners to become competent in the reading, listening, speaking, and writing of the English language through the development of literacy and academic skills in grade level content areas.
The Texas Education Agency (TEA) provides the following information for each program:
Bilingual education programs are designed to make grade level academic content accessible to English learners through the development of literacy and academic skills in the child’s primary language and English. The academic, linguistic, and cultural background of English learners is used in a bilingual education program as the platform for acquiring grade level content material in the primary language and in English.
ESL programs are designed to make grade level academic content accessible to English Learners. ESL programs target English language development, including listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills through academic content instruction that is linguistically and culturally responsive. This means that the ESL program uses the academic, linguistic, and cultural background of English learners as a platform for acquiring grade level content material in English.
Early ISD currently offers an ESL program with the two types of state-approved program models. The Content-Based ESL program model will allow English learners to receive all content area instruction (English language arts and reading, mathematics, science, and social studies) by ESL certified teachers. The Pull-Out ESL program model can be implemented within the English Learner’s classroom, or the English Learner may be provided his or her English language arts and reading instruction by an ESL certified teacher in another classroom setting. The goal of both programs is for English Learners to attain full proficiency in English in order to participate equitably in school.
What are the benefits of an ESL program? Academic instruction is provided by teachers who are trained in effective second language acquisition methods; understand the specific language needs of English learners and how to address them; recognize the benefits of an English learner’s academic, cultural, and linguistic background; and can adapt instruction, pacing, and materials to target an English learner’s language proficiency level. Linguistic accommodations on state assessments can be provided as needed. Meaningful participation in subjects such as art, music, and physical education will be provided alongside grade level peers.
Your child will develop reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills in English through the English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS) in conjunction with their grade level academic instruction in the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) of all content areas including English language arts and reading, mathematics, science, and social studies.
Please refer to http://elltx.org/parents.html for more information.