The "Why” Behind the Extended Four-Year Monitoring Period

Here’s a seemingly simple question: Why did ESSA extend the monitoring period for former ELLs to four years?  

One of the more interesting accountability changes in the new ESSA legislation has to do with the requirement that districts now must monitor former ELLs for four years instead of two. We were pleased to hear this at Ellevation, given our focus on supporting digital monitoring processes for school districts, and we aren’t alone. The Council of Great City Schools praised the change, and Dr. Wayne Wright’s recent webinar compliments the adjustment as well. But I couldn’t help wondering why the change was implemented in the first place. What were lawmakers thinking?

Topics: Technology, Policy

A New Workflow Makes Approving STAAR Test Accommodations Easier

Educators in Texas face a daunting challenge when it comes to serving English learners. In Dallas, for example, one out of every three students is a non-native speaker. According to the Migration Policy Institute, Texas was home to nearly 810,000 ELs in 2014, meaning the state has the second largest EL population nationwide.

Topics: Product

A Thanksgiving Read: Inspiring Stories of ELL Tenacity

With the start of school behind us, Thanksgiving falls at such a perfect time, providing an opportunity to recharge, spend time with friends and families, and give thanks. As we all know Thanksgiving is also in part a story of common ground and celebration. During this time of relative quiet, at least on the work front, I find my attention turning to stories of inspiration that connect to our work, and to the direction we will take as a nation.

Topics: Ellevation News

How ELL Specialists Can Use Stories to Become Stronger Influencers

A few weeks back, I was fortunate enough to attend the 2016 WIDA National Conference in Philadelphia. More than 39 states and educational organizations participate in the WIDA Consortium, so this conference is a really a big deal. For those of you who haven’t been, this is an amazing conference with much to offer. But now, just days later, the key takeaways are already fuzzy!

Topics: Teacher Tips

Effective: The Most Important Word in the ESSA

In this blog series, we host a running conversation about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and English Learners (ELs). Our goal is to put a spotlight on key features of the legislation, with insights from practitioners and policy makers in the field. In doing so, we hope to make sense of a rapidly-evolving policy landscape and help the educators in our community understand the changes that will affect their work. Today, we are focusing on the single most important word in the Department’s recent guidance document: effective.

Topics: Policy

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