Sheltered English Immersion Programs

The Worcester Public Schools offers Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) as the predominant program for English Learners (ELs) as required by law. The SEI program provides daily ESL instruction to students from all proficiency levels. All students also receive instruction in content areas delivered by SEI Endorsed teachers so that the academic content is accessible and comprehensible by the students. The combination of explicit instruction in English Language Development (ELD) by ESL teachers and of Sheltered Content Instruction (SCI) by SEI Endorsed teachers, maximizes the academic achievement of EL students. Under this model, EL students with an entering level of English (EPL 1), are expected to reach advanced English Proficiency (EPL levels 5 or 6) within 5 to 7 years of consistent participation in SEI programs. Proficiency levels determine the amount of ESL instruction students receive per day. SEI is available at all schools in the district. In addition, other programs are offered where EL students may be eligible based upon specific criteria. All programs are described below. Parents/guardians receive information about all EL programs at the time of enrollment by the EL Welcome Center staff located at the Parent Information Welcome Center.

Sheltered English Immersion– SEI Elementary (provided at all elementary schools)

Students receive ESL instruction delivered by an ESL certified teacher.  ESL instruction provides explicit, direct, and systematic instruction to learn the English Language across all linguistic domains including, speaking, listening, reading and writing. The instruction is provided through a curriculum anchored in English Language Development (ELD) standards from the World Class Instruction Design and Assessment (WIDA) Consortium, that is also aligned with the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks. The curriculum also addresses literacy acquisition and the development of academic language.  

Sheltered English Immersion– SEI Secondary (provided at all secondary schools)

Students receive ESL instruction delivered by an ESL certified teacher for full periods, as a subject area.  ESL classes are scheduled according to the student’s proficiency level.  Level 1 & 2 students are scheduled for two periods per day of language and literacy acquisition classes. Level 3, 4 and 5 students are scheduled for one period per day of language development classes and/or academic language classes.