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Virginia Educators’ Guide to Supporting English Language Learners

Virginia Educators’ Guide to Supporting English Language Learners

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in the fall of 2016, 7.8 percent of public school students in the state of Virginia were identified as English learners (ELs), with the highest concentration of ELs located in larger urban areas. To address the needs of this growing segment of the student population, Virginia educators are working harder than ever to refine administrative and instructional practices to help students master both English and Virginia’s rigorous Standards of Learning (SOL).

To support you in your efforts, we’ve assembled a curated list of our top resources focused on helping ELs achieve success in the classroom.

Build Strong Instructional Programs

Based on the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) results reported on The Nation’s Report Card for the state of Virginia, 50 percent of 4th grade students and 40 percent of 8th grade students scored at or above proficient in math, but for English language learners, those numbers are 7.7 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively. In reading, 43 percent of 4th grade students and 37 percent of 8th grade students scored at or above proficient, while for the EL subgroup, those numbers were only 7.5 percent and 2.7 percent, respectively.

Clearly, ELs are not achieving at the same level as their English proficient peers, which is not surprising as they face additional barriers to grasping academic concepts. One of the most efficient ways to support ELs is to ensure that your school or district utilizes Virginia’s EL resources and implements pedagogical approaches that accommodate a variety of educational needs. 

Utilize these planning guides to create or refine your instructional programs to support an environment in which ELs and all students will thrive.

Special Populations Worksheet

Use this worksheet to plan programs to address the needs of special populations of students, including ELs.

A Guide to Engaging Your ELL Parents

It's not uncommon for parents of EL students to feel intimidated or discouraged from becoming actively engaged with their children's education due to language barriers or other cultural differences. We gathered several resources to help you find ways to encourage your EL parents to engage more.

Personalized Learning How-To Guide

Personalized learning allows educators to meet the varying needs of students, improving learning outcomes for all. This workbook takes the guesswork out of personalized learning by providing a step-by-step plan from development to implementation.

Reading and Literacy Workbook

It’s a well-known fact that a strong foundation in literacy is key to future academic success for all student populations. This workbook evaluates the many facets of structuring an effective, research-based reading and language arts block and helps you select the appropriate technology tools to support your approach.

Credit Recovery Workbook

According to the U.S. Department of Education, in 2016, 45.4 percent of Virginia ELs graduated high school, compared with the nearly 89 percent graduation rate for all students in the state. Because of the additional obstacles ELs face, they often fall behind, so it’s important to have a credit recovery program in place to help students catch up and get on track to graduation. Edmentum’s credit recovery workbook will show you how to set up a new program or enhance your current credit recovery offering.

Implement Classroom Strategies That Support Language Development and Academic Achievement

Breakthroughs in student learning happen in the classroom, and as you work toward closing the achievement gap between ELs and non-ELs through more inclusive and accessible instructional practices, we hope you will find the resources below helpful.

Looking for an online learning partner to help support your English language learners? Learn more about how Edmentum’s WIDA™ Prime V2™ Correlated programs drive success for ELs in Virginia.

fabiola.garcia's picture

Fabiola received her B.A. in Psychology and her M.A. in Sociology from Texas Woman's University. She happily joined the Edmentum family in the summer of 2014 and spent several years in the support and sales teams before serving as a Marketing Associate. Fabiola is passionate about education and wishes to jumpstart educators and students on a path towards success by sharing resources and tools that will streamline their time spent inside and outside of the classroom.

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