EL Determination and Enrollment
Upon enrollment at the Parent Information Welcome Center, every family (PreK-12) is asked to complete a Home Language Survey in the language of their choice. If a language other than or in addition to English is reported in any of the survey questions or the prospective student is suspected to be an English Learner (EL), a test for English proficiency will be given to the student as required by law. Test findings are discussed with the parent/guardian including whether the child appears to be proficient in English or has been found to be an EL. If the prospective student meets the criteria for EL status, parents/guardians are provided with information about Sheltered English Immersion and other program options available in the district. They are also informed of Opt-Out options.
*Middle and High school students may register and complete the Home Language Survey at their home schools. If a language other than English appears on the form, the home school refers the family to The Parent Information Welcome Center so that the prospective student takes the English language proficiency test as required by law and enrollment is completed as referenced above at the EL Welcome Center.
Students who meet the criteria for EL status and who score less than proficient in English in the language proficiency measure are designated as English Learners (EL). Students are assigned a preliminary English Proficiency Level (EPL) which ranges from 1 through 5 (1= Entering, 2= Emerging, 3= Developing, 4= Expanding and 5= Bridging). Students who score at the level 6 are considered proficient in English and not designated as EL. Kindergarten students receive an EPL of 1 through 4, based upon their performance on the WIDA-Screener. Kindergarteners who score at EPL 4 are considered transitional and require monitoring for four years. The EPL status is updated every year based upon the student’s performance in the ACCESS for ELs test, where students demonstrate their progress in attaining English proficiency every year. ACCESS tests are administered in January and February every year. Student profiles are updated at the end of every academic year once ACCESS scores have been received.
Opt-Out from ESL Instruction
Parents are informed about their right to opt-out their child from ESL instruction at the time of enrollment. Parents/guardians may request to opt-out their child from ESL Instruction at any time. In such situations, the EL student maintains the EL designation and is still required to take the ACCESS test every year. Schools are still required to provide educational supports available at the school that would help address the academic needs of the student. Schools are also required to monitor opt-out students. Parents can rescind their opt-out request at any time.
Reclassification from Active EL Status
EL student profiles are updated at the end of every academic year once ACCESS scores have been received. Students who scored at Level 6 are transitioned out of the EL designation. Students who scored at level 5 or above in the total composite of ACCESS and in all domains, are reviewed for reclassification to non-EL status by the end of the academic year. Level 5 students who meet the criteria above, and who consistently perform ordinary work in English successfully, would be transitioned to non-EL status. Reclassified students are transitioned out of Active EL status and considered Former English Learners (FEL). FEL students are no longer required to take the ACCESS test. However, these students require monitoring for four years.
For additional information or questions, please call the English Learners office at 508-799-3623 or the EL Welcome Center at the Parent Information Welcome Center at 508-799-3198.