Supporting English Learners with Disabilities
While total U.S. public school enrollment has hovered around 50 million since 2000, the percentage of students identified as English learners has grown, from 8.1 percent in 2000 to 10.1 percent in 2017. A subgroup of these students, English learners with disabilities, continues to be one of the most underserved. To monitor and evaluate these students’ progress toward language proficiency and mastery of grade-level content, all staff—not just specialists in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)—should have a working knowledge of these culturally and linguistically diverse students’ needs.
Also In this Issue
State boards can watch policies for red flags that hold students back.
State policy should confront the pervasive low expectations that the outcomes reveal.
The data point up a need for services that extend beyond the school year.
Build a system that supports each student rather than a mythical average one.
Equitable education means overcoming challenges in identification, staff training, and funding.