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Developing Programs for English Language Learners: Assessment

Resource Materials for Planning and Self-Assessments

Part II: Developing ELL Programs

Assessment of the Need for ELL Services

This section of the ELL plan describes the district's procedures for assessing potential ELL students to determine which students are ELL and in need of a program of services in order to participate meaningfully in the district's regular instructional program. In drafting this section of the plan, the following questions may be used to ensure that key points are addressed:

  • Does the ELL plan contain a detailed description of the district's procedures for assessing potential ELL students?

  • Are the assessment procedures designed so that all students identified as potentially needing ELL services will be evaluated for English language proficiency?

  • Do the assessment procedures include a description of all skill areas to be assessed and measured consistent with the educational approach and program model being utilized by the district? (For example, do the assessment procedures cover all aspects of English language proficiency that could affect a student's ability to participate meaningfully in the regular curriculum--does the assessment address speaking, reading, writing, and understanding?)

  • Does the description of the assessment procedures include a statement of the instruments and methods (e.g., tests, past academic records, teacher observations, etc.) used to assess students' English language abilities and academic level?

  • Are the guidelines and criteria for the use of each instrument and method included in the procedures? (For example, if a commercial English language proficiency test is utilized, has the district followed the test publisher's guidelines for use of the test?)

  • Are appropriate timeframes established for each step of the assessment process? Are the timeframes reflected in the ELL plan?

  • Does the description identify the person(s) responsible for assessing each student and any special abilities, skills, and training that individuals may need to conduct the assessments?

  • Does the description include a statement of the criteria (e.g., test scores, or other information) that will determine whether a student is ELL and in need of a program of services to participate meaningfully in the district's regular instructional program? Do the criteria include an objective measure(s)?

  • Does the plan describe the interrelationship and weight accorded to the criteria (e.g., test scores and teacher observation) that the district uses to classify a student as ELL.

  • Does the ELL plan contain a statement of how the district will maintain documentation of the assessment results and its decision regarding whether students are ELL?

  • Does the plan note where such records are kept and by whom?

  • Are procedures included for appropriate parental notification and input?

 
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Last Modified: 03/16/2005