Tag Archives | English Language Learning

New York State Sets Focus on English-Learners

Lesli A. Maxwell, Education Week, June 3, 2014 With the shift to the common standards and recent history of low student-achievement results as catalysts, education leaders in New York state are pushing a new agenda for English-language learners that calls for more accountability for their needs and more opportunities for rigorous bilingual and dual-language instruction. Called […]

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St. Paul English learners sent into mainstream, ready or not

Mila Koumpilova, Pioneer Press, April 26, 2014 – Pisey and Monita Pov arrived from Cambodia two years ago knowing only basic English phrases. This year at St. Paul’s Harding High School, they are charting population growth in biology. Alongside native English speakers in literature class, they are reading novels with “many characters and difficult words,” Pisey […]

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Minnesota: Language as asset

Pioneer Press Editorial, April 22, 2014 – The growing numbers of multilingual students — often otherwise known as “English language learners” — in Minnesota schools are getting attention from educators and lawmakers. It’s the result of thoughtful public policy about the students’ future — and Minnesota’s. “We need every one of our English language learners to […]

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LEAPs Act calls for sea change in thinking about language skills and teaching

Beth Hawkins, MinnPost, April 16, 2014 – Right now, the fate of Minnesota children who are learning English depends on where and how they end up in school. The least fortunate languish, falling years behind in classrooms where lessons are spooled out in a language they can’t understand. Because conventional wisdom has held that students must […]

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Minnesota surge in bilingual students calling for teaching shift

Christopher Magan, Pioneer Press, April 12, 2014 – Spanish teacher Javier Blazquez was tired of seeing Hispanic students’ bilingual abilities languish, so he found a way to challenge them. The Burnsville High School instructor created his Spanish-for-native-speakers class for those students who grew up speaking the language at home with the aim of improving their writing […]

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Minnesota students learning English face an uphill battle, but innovations are helping

Kim McGuire, Star Tribune, October 26, 2013 – As the popularity of language immersion schools continues to surge in Minnesota, a bitter irony endures — many of the state’s 65,000 students who are trying to learn English are struggling. Only 17 percent of English language learners were determined to be proficient in reading on this year’s […]

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Dayton wants to boost funding for English language learning

Tim Post, Minnesota Public Radio, February 15, 2013 – In hopes of boosting student achievement, Gov. Mark Dayton wants to boost funding for the state’s English language learning programs by about $4.5 million a year, a 12 percent increase over current levels. The governor’s proposal is aimed at helping the 65,000 students in Minnesota for whom […]

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Adult immigrants being trained to help students learn English

Christopher Magan, Pioneer Press, February 9, 2013 – Anisa Amin moved to the U.S. from Somalia a decade ago, so she knows the challenges immigrants face. And she wants to help. That’s why the Bloomington resident enrolled in a class offered by the Burnsville-Eagan-Savage school district that trains people like her to become teaching assistants. The […]

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Minn. Superintendent Pioneered ELL Reforms

Lesli A. Maxwell, Education Week, February 4, 2013 – Few top-tier school administrators can claim as high a level of intimacy with the education of English-language learners as Valeria Silva, the superintendent of the school system in St. Paul, Minn. A native of Chile, Silva, 51, spoke no English when she first came to Minnesota in the […]

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District 191 scrutinizes ESL program

John Gessner, MN Sun ThisWeek,  June 11, 2012 – Graduation rates fell in recent years A nosedive in graduation rates among English as a second language students in District 191 is a key reason for a review of the ESL program that has district officials pledging to improve it. The review, which included on-site observations […]

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