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California Department of Education August 21, 2006

English Learners in California Frequently Asked Questions


The following are responses to generally asked uestions regarding English
!earners "E!s#$
The freuently asked uestions and answers are intended to assist school
districts in implementing ser%ices to E!s$ &y no means does this collection
represent all of the uestions or scenarios$
'ntroduction and Demographics
'dentification and (lacement
Curriculum and 'nstruction
(arental E)ception *ai%ers
+taffing
Testing, Assessment and Accounta,ility
+tudents with Disa,ilities
-ther .uestions
Acronyms
/eferences
Introduction and Demographics
California has the most diverse student population in the world,
with more than 100 languages spoken in the homes of those
students. Today, our student population is majority-minority. orty-
one per!ent of our students speak a language other than "nglish at
home, and a #uarter of all California pu$li! s!hool students are
struggling to learn the "nglish language in s!hool.
%adly, too many people view su!h diversity as a $ig pro$lem. &
don't. &nstead, & say( &magine the potential of that diversity in
today's and tomorrow's )glo$al e!onomy. &f we edu!ate these
students well, our state would not only $e a$le to !ompete more
effe!tively, $ut it would $e a$le to lead our nation and the world
e!onomi!ally.
*a!k +'Connell, %uperintendent of ,u$li! &nstru!tion
%tate of "du!ation remarks, -00.
0early 1$6 million pupils in the kindergarten through grade twel%e "1212# pu,lic
educational system in California, or one in four, are E!s$ This represents almost
one2third of the E!s in the nation$ E!s are enrolled in almost e%ery district and in
the %ast ma3ority of schools in the state$ Appro)imately 45 percent are +panish
speaking, 2$2 percent are 6ietnamese speaking, and 1$5 percent are 7mong
speaking$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 1 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
E!s face the daunting task of learning the academic curriculum and a new
language concurrently$ They need to learn English uickly enough and fluently
enough to participate in academic work, and like all children, learn grade le%el
mathematics, reading9language arts, social studies, and science$
The law go%erning the educational ser%ices for E!s is %aried and consists of ,oth
state and federal reuirements$ 8ederal law clearly takes precedence o%er state
law if there is a conflict$ Therefore, districts must ensure that they comply with all
federal reuirements while also implementing state reuirements$ Applica,le
legal citations referenced are included in the responses, as appropriate$
Identification and Placement
1 !ho is identified as an EL"
An E! is a 1212 student who, ,ased on o,3ecti%e assessment, has not
de%eloped listening, speaking, reading, and writing proficiencies in English
sufficient for participation in the regular school program$ These students are
sometimes referred to as !imited English (roficient "!E(#$ The process for
identification is descri,ed in the California English !anguage De%elopment
Test "CE!DT# Assistance (acket for +chool Districts at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9el9resources$asp$
# !hat is the program placement for ELs in California"
An English language classroom is the placement for E!s in California, unless
a parental e)ception wai%er is granted for an alternati%e program$ There are
two types of English language classrooms: +tructured English 'mmersion
"+E'# and English !anguage ;ainstream$ +E' classrooms are designed for
students with less than <reasona,le fluency=$ An English language
mainstream classroom is designed for students with <reasona,le fluency= or a
<good working knowledge of English=$ Typically, E!s scoring at the ,eginning
to intermediate le%els on the CE!DT are considered to ha%e less than
<reasona,le fluency= "California "du!ation Code >"C? +ection @05#$
An E! shall ,e transferred from a +E' classroom to an English language
mainstream classroom when the pupil has acuired a reasona,le le%el of
English proficiency ""C @05#$ 7owe%er, at any time, including during the
school year, a parent or guardian may ha%e his or her child mo%ed into an
English language mainstream classroom "California Code of /egulations
0CC/1, Title 5, section 11@01#$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 2 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
$ !hat is %EI"
+E', also known as <+heltered English 'mmersion=, is an English language
acuisition process for young children in which nearly all classroom
instruction is in English, ,ut with curriculum and presentation designed for
children who are learning the language ""C @06#$
Typically, +E' includes: "1# English language de%elopment "E!D# appropriate
to each studentAs le%el of English proficiency, "2# content instruction utiliBing
specially designed academic instruction in English "+DA'E# whene%er needed
for full access to the core, and "@# may include primary language support$
Csually, +E' is for E!s scoring at the ,eginning through intermediate le%els on
CE!DT$
The California Department of Education "CDE# has consistently ad%ised !EAs
of their legal o,ligation to pro%ide the minimum program elements of E!D,
formerly known as E+!, and access to the core curriculum "Castaneda v.
,i!kard, 1D41#$ +ee uestion 1D for additional information regarding E!D$
& 'ust all ELs (e enrolled in an %EI program for one year"
E!s who lack reasona,le fluency in English, as defined ,y the district, must
,e placed in a +E' program unless their parent9guardian reuests placement
in an English language mainstream classroom or is granted a parental
e)ception wai%er for an alternati%e program$ -f course, all E!s must recei%e
additional and appropriate educational ser%ices until they are reclassified ""C
@05, CC/, Title 5, sections 11@01 and 11@02#$
) 'ay EL students (e re*enrolled in a %EI program"
Ees$ 2n "nglish learner may $e re-enrolled in a stru!tured "nglish program
not normally intended to e3!eed one year if the pupil has not a!hieved a
reasona$le level of "nglish profi!ien!y unless the parents or guardians of the
pupil o$je!t to the e3tended pla!ement 4CC/, Title 5, section 11@01#$
+ !hat is a Dual Language Program or ,-o*!ay Immersion Program"
Two2way immersion programs integrate language minority students "E!s# and
language ma3ority students "English speakers# in order to de%elop their
,ilingualism and ,iliteracy in English and another language$ 'n two2way
programs, the model selected generally prescri,es the amount of time spent
in the target "non2English# language$ Dual !anguage (rogram or Two2*ay
'mmersion (rogram is one of the instructional deli%ery approaches under the
alternati%e program$ 8or more information, please %isit
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9sp9el9ip$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age @ of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
. !hat does a parent need to do to ha/e his0her child placed in an English
language mainstream classroom"
The parent9guardian of an E! need only reuest this placement$ This does not
entail going through the wai%er process$ "CC/, Title 5, sections 11@01>,?#$
1 !hat does a parent need to do to ha/e his0her child placed in an
alternati/e program"
The parent9guardian may reuest a wai%er to allow his9her child to participate
in an alternati%e program following local district wai%er procedures$ The final
decision to grant or deny the reuest lies with the principal and educational
staff who must apply the standard found at CC/, Title 5, section 11@0D",#"F#$
2 'ust students under -ai/er option EC $113c4 (e placed in an English
language classroom for $5 days each year"
0o$ E! students with appro%ed wai%ers need only ,e placed in an English
language classroom for @0 days in their initial school year in California$
Although the wai%er reuest must ,e su,mitted annually, in su,seuent years
the student need not repeat the @0 day trial period$
15 !here may %EI take place"
+E' may take place in any educational setting where the teacher is ualified
to pro%ide it$
11 !here can -e get information a(out de/eloping programs for
linguistically and culturally di/erse students"
CDE has a list of resources with information a,out de%eloping programs for
linguistically and culturally di%erse students at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9sp9el9er$
Curriculum and Instruction
1# !hat responsi(ilities do districts ha/e to pro/ide full access to grade*
le/el core curriculum for ELs"
Districts must ensure that all students meet grade2le%el core curriculum
standards within a reasona,le amount of time$ 'f a district chooses to
emphasiBe E!D ,efore full access to the core curriculum or if the student
does not comprehend enough English to allow full access to the core
curriculum, the district must de%elop and successfully implement a plan for
E!s to recoup any and all academic deficits ,efore the deficits ,ecome
irrepara,le "CC/, Title 5, sections 11@02>a? and >,?#$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age F of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
1$ !hat are the ELD standards"
The "nglish-language 5evelopment %tandards are designed to supplement
the English2language arts content standards to ensure that !E( students
"now called E!s in California# de%elop proficiency in ,oth the English
language and the concepts and skills contained in the English2language arts
content standards$ The standards are designed to assist teachers in mo%ing
E!s to fluency in English and proficiency in the English2language arts content
standards$ The E!D standards were also used to de%elop the CE!DT$ The
E!D standards can ,e downloaded at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9el9admin$asp$
4"nglish-6anguage 5evelopment %tandards for California ,u$li! %!hools,
1DDD7
1& 'ust the language of instruction used (y the teaching personnel in an
English language classroom (e 6o/er-helmingly7 the English
language"
Ees$ 'n all English language classrooms, the language of instruction used ,y
the teaching personnel must ,e <o%erwhelmingly= the English language$ 'n
+E' programs howe%er, <nearly all= classroom instruction is in English$ 't is the
responsi,ility of each district to define <o%erwhelmingly= and <nearly all= in
order to determine how much primary language instruction or support is
permitted ""C @06 and @10#$
1) 'ay primary language literacy de/elopment take place in California
schools"
Although instruction in English language classrooms must ,e o%erwhelmingly
in English, instruction need not ,e e)clusi%ely in English$ 'n alternati%e
programs, instruction may ,e pro%ided in English as well as in a language
other than English$
1+ 8o- long must districts pro/ide ser/ices to ELs"
+chool districts are reuired to !ontinue to provide additional and appropriate
edu!ational servi!es to "nglish learners until they have demonstrated
"nglish-language skills !ompara$le to that of the distri!t's average native
"nglish-language speakers and have re!ouped any a!ademi! defi!its whi!h
may have $een in!urred in other areas of the !ore !urri!ulum "CC/, Title 5,
section 11@02#$ +er%ices must continue until E!s meet o,3ecti%e
reclassification criteria ""C @1@#$ This means that E! students must ,e
pro%ided with E!D and +DA'E, as needed, and9or primary language
instruction until they are redesignated as fluent English proficient "8E(#$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 5 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
1. Does a district ha/e any responsi(ility for monitoring
redesignated0reclassified students"
Ees$ Districts recei%ing Title ''' funds are reuired under 0o Child !eft &ehind
"0C!&# to monitor students for two years after redesignation "0C!&, +ection
@121>a?>F?#$
11 'ay %DAIE in content classes (e considered part of %EI"
Ees$ 7owe%er, E!D must also ,e part of the defined +E'$ +DA'E is defined,
for purpose of teacher credentialing, as instru!tion in a su$je!t area,
delivered in "nglish, that is spe!ially designed to meet the needs of limited-
"nglish-profi!ient pupils$ +DA'E is an instructional methodology, not a
program
""C FF25@$2>,?#$
12 Are all ELs required to recei/e ELD appropriate to their English
proficiency le/el"
Ees$ During the regular day, differentiated E!D instruction appropriate to the
English proficiency le%el of each E! must ,e pro%ided ,y an authoriBed
teacher until the student is reclassified$ Districts are to pro%ide E!s with
instruction using whate%er materials are deemed appropriate that are
specifically designed to ena,le students at each le%el of English language
proficiency to acuire academic English rapidly, efficiently, and effecti%ely$ The
law does not reuire a specific num,er of minutes of E!D for all E!s$ Each
district has the discretion to determine the amount of time appropriate for
students at different English language proficiency le%els$ The district should
ha%e a rationale for the scheduling and amount of E!D students are recei%ing
that ,ears relation to progress in English "Casta8eda v. ,i!kard, 1D41#$ 8or
the suggested amount of instructional minutes for E!D, consult the +tate
&oard of Education "+&E# adopted criteria for reading9language arts9E!D
instructional materials contained in the 2004 8ramework posted at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ci9rl9cf$
#5 Is it mandatory to pro/ide EL ser/ices to pupils -hose parents do not
-ant their children to recei/e those ser/ices"

(arents may reuest that their children ,e e)empted from a specific
instructional setting "CC/, Title 5, section 11@01 ",##$ 7owe%er, districts still
ha%e an o,ligation to ensure that students recei%e E!D and access to other
core content areas from teachers who are ualified to pro%ide such instruction
"Casta8eda v. ,i!kard, 1D41#$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 6 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
#1 !hat are the options for introducing English Literacy"
'n English !anguage classrooms "+E' and mainstream# English literacy is
introduced immediately$ 'n alternati%e classrooms, literacy is also introduced
immediatelyG the formal introduction of English literacy depends on the
program design$
## !hat instructional materials can LEAs use to pro/ide ELD instruction"
Districts and schools ha%e a %ariety of resources and instructional materials
a%aila,le to support E!D instruction$
8or grades kindergarten through grade eight, state2adopted materials contain
E!D support components$ 'n addition, the current list includes inter%ention
materials for E!s$ The list of state2adopted reading9language arts materials is
a%aila,le on the CDE *e, site at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ci9rl9im$
8or grades nine through twel%e, there are no state2adopted instructional
materials$ !ocal district go%erning ,oards adopt instructional materials for use
in their high schools$
#$$!hat materials should (e pro/ided to our ELs"
E!s must ,e pro%ided standards2aligned instructional materials$ 8or
kindergarten through grade eight, these are state2adopted instructional
materials in mathematics, science, reading9language arts, and history2social
science that are consistent with the content and cycles of the curriculum
frameworks and include uni%ersal access features that address the needs of
E!s$ 8or grades nine through twel%e local go%erning ,oards should adopt
standards2aligned materials for all students that include uni%ersal access
features$ ;ore information is a%aila,le at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ci9cr9cf9imfrpfa1$asp$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age H of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
PA9E:,AL E;CEP,I<: !AI=E9%
#& !hen are parental e>ception -ai/ers required"
*hen the parent9guardian of an E! wishes to ha%e his9her student placed in a
program that is an alternati%e to +E', or an English language mainstream
classroom, a wai%er is reuired$ An alternati%e program is likely to ,e some
form of ,ilingual education such as the Two2*ay program ""C @10,@11#$
#) Are districts o(ligated to esta(lish a parental e>ception -ai/er process"
Ees$ +chool districts must esta,lish procedures for granting parental
e)ception wai%ers$ These procedures must ,e appro%ed ,y the local
go%erning ,oard$ "CC/, Title 5, section 11@0DG "C @10 and @11#
#+ !hat is the standard that schools and districts must use in making
decisions to grant or deny a parent?s -ai/er request"
,arental e3!eption waivers shall $e granted unless the s!hool prin!ipal and
edu!ational staff have determined that an alternative program . . . would not
$e $etter suited for the overall edu!ational development of the pupil "CC/,
Title 5, section 11@0D >,?>F?#$
#. If I am denied a parental e>ception -ai/er@ -hat are my options"
'n cases where a parental e)ception wai%er is denied, parents9guardians must
,e informed in writing of the reason"s# for denial and ad%ised of any
procedures that e)ist to appeal the decision to the local ,oard of education or
their right to appeal to a court$ A parent may also reuest a +&E re%iew of the
districtAs wai%er procedure$
(arents always ha%e the right to address the districtAs ,oard of education
regarding any issues of concern$ (arents may also file a formal complaint
under the districtAs Cniform Complaint (rocedures "CC/, Title 5, sections
11@0D >d?#$
#1 If an alternati/e program is not offered at a specific school site@ is the
district o(ligated to pro/ide transportation to a district school -here an
alternati/e program is a/aila(le"
'f the district pro%ides transportation to other optional or %oluntary programs,
such as magnet programs, academies, or other alternati%e programs, it must
pro%ide transportation to the alternati%e program that is a%aila,le$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 4 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
#2 Are there resources to assist LEA staff in locating parental notification
documents translated into non*English languages"
Ees$ The Clearinghouse for ;ultilingual Documents "C;D# is a *e,2,ased
resource that pro%ides information a,out pu,lic and secondary educational
documents translated into non2English languages ,y California educational
agencies$ De%eloped ,y the CDE, the C;D helps districts and county offices
to locate useful translations of parental notification documents and reduce
redundant translation efforts$ 'n so doing, the C;D helps schools to meet
state and federal reuirements for document translation and parental
notification, including the reuirements in "C F4D45, the 0C!& Act of 2001,
and other legislation$ ;ore information is a%aila,le at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ls9pf9cm9.
%,AFFI:A
$5 Are the Bilingual Cross*cultural Language and Academic De/elopment
3BCLAD4@ Cross*cultural Language and Academic De/elopment 3CLAD4@
or their equi/alent authoriCations required to teach ELs"
Ees$ The type of authoriBation reuired depends on the type of instruction
pro%ided to E!s$ ;ore information is a%aila,le at http:99www$ctc$ca$go%$
$1 Does California state la- require that teachers of ELs attain
authoriCation to pro/ide instruction to ELs"
Ees$ +pecific reuirements are pro%ided in the CDEAs 8A.s for Teacher
AuthoriBation for E!s in California at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9sp9el9t@$
$# Do the 8ighly Qualified ,eachers Credentialing 9equirements for ELs
also apply to ,eachers from A(road"
Ees$ -ut2of2state and foreign nationals must fully meet the 7ighly .ualified
Credentialing /euirements$ 8oreign nationals ha%e one year to pass the
California &asic Educational +kills Test$ During the first year in California they
are considered highly ualified if they are eligi,le and apply for any of the
appro%ed California Commission on Teacher Credentialing credentials$
8ederal law reuires that I21 %isa e)change %isitors return to their home
country after three years$ During the first year in California, foreign nationals
may o,tain the emergency &C!AD authoriBation to work with E!s in regular
classroom settings and some special education assignments$ +ince most of
the teachers are <not new= to the profession, they ,enefit from the 7igh
-,3ecti%e Cniform +tate +tandards of E%aluation "7-C++E# options$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age D of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
7-C++E options, as currently esta,lished, are effecti%e until Iune @0, 200H$
8or more information regarding 7ighly .ualified Teachers Credentialing
/euirements and 7-C++E, %isit http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ncl,9sr9t9$
,esting@ Assessment and Accounta(ility
$$ !hat is the California ELD ,est"
8ederal and state laws reuire a state test of English language proficiency
that school districts must gi%e to students who are E!s$ The California test is
called the CE!DT$ All students whose primary language is not English must
take the test within @0 calendar days after they are enrolled in a California
pu,lic school for the first time$ The CE!DT also must ,e gi%en once each year
to E!s until they are reclassified as fluent English proficient$ ;ore information
on the CE!DT is a%aila,le at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9el9resources$asp$
$& !hat is the purpose of the CELD,"
The purpose of the CE!DT is: "1# to identify new students who are E!s, in
kindergarten through grade twel%eG "2# to determine their le%el of English
proficiencyG "@# to monitor their progress in learning English on an annual
,asisG and "F# to determine when students ha%e met one of the criteria to ,e
reclassified to 8E( status$ The Assistance (acket for +chool Districts9+chools
includes facts a,out the CE!DT, release dates of test results, CE!DT
accommodations, reclassification, and communicating results with
parents9guardians$ 't is a%aila,le at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9el9resources$asp$
$) Can parents opt to ha/e their students e>empted from taking the
CELD,"
0o$ (arents cannot <opt out= of the CE!DT ,ecause English language
proficiency assessment is ,oth a federal "0C!& Title '$ section 1111>,?>H? and
Title ''', 2002# and state reuirement ""C @1@#$
$+ Are ELs required to take the tests in the %tandardiCed ,esting and
9eporting 3%,A94 program"
Ees$ All students in grades two through ele%en participate in the +TA/
program, including students with disa,ilities and students who are E!s$ 'n
addition to the tests administered in English, all +panish2speaking E!s who
ha%e ,een enrolled in a school in the Cnited +tates for less than 12 months or
who recei%e instruction in +panish regardless of how long they ha%e ,een in
school in the Cnited +tates, must take the designated primary language test
"D(!T#, currently the Aprenda @ ""C 606F0#$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 10 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
+tudents whose parents or guardians ha%e su,mitted written reuests to
e)empt them from +TA/ program testing do not take any tests ""C 60615#$
;ore information is a%aila,le at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9sr$
+tandards2&ased Tests in +panish "+T+# for reading9language arts and
mathematics are currently ,eing de%eloped for grades two, three, and four,
and field testing is anticipated for fall of 2006$ The tests are to replace the
D(!T "Aprenda @# as each grade ,ecomes operational$ The +T+ ,lueprints,
appro%ed ,y the +&E, can ,e %iewed at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9sr9resources$asp$
8or more information on the California Assessment +ystem, a chart is
a%aila,le at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9sa9caassessment$asp$

$. !hat assistance can (e pro/ided to ELs -hen taking the tests in the
%,A9 programJ
E!s may use translation glossaries or word lists "English2to2primary
language# that do not include definitions or formulas for all su,3ects, e)cept
English2language arts$ They also may ha%e the test directions translated for
them and ask clarifying uestions in their own language for all su,3ects,
including English2language arts$ These %ariations are descri,ed on the last
page of the ;atri) of Test 6ariations, Accommodations and ;odifications for
Administration of California +tatewide Assessments a%aila,le at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9tg9sr$
$1 8o- can districts e/aluate ELs to get a comprehensi/e /ie- of the
student?s academic standing"
To get a comprehensi%e %iew of a studentAs academic standing, districts
should utiliBe all a%aila,le standardiBed assessments "i$e$ +TA/ results,
CE!DT results, Aprenda @ results, +T+ results, etc$# as well as district
assessments, academic coursework, and rele%ant program information$ The
goal should ,e to monitor studentAs progress to ensure students are gaining
English proficiency and impro%ing their academic knowledge$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 11 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
&5 !hat are Annual 'easura(le Achie/ement <(Decti/es 3A'A<s4"
Title ''' reuires that states hold !EAs accounta,le for meeting three A;A-s
for E!s$ The A;A-s were appro%ed ,y the +&E$ The first A;A- relates to
making annual progress on the CE!DT, the second relates to attaining
English proficiency, and the third A;A- relates to meeting Adeuate Eearly
(rogress ,y the E! su,group$ 8or more information regarding
Title ''', %isit http:99www$cde$ca$go%9sp9el9t@9t@amaotargets$asp$
%,EDE:,% !I,8 DI%ABILI,IE%
"+pecial education and +ection 50F Accommodation (lan students#
&1 !ill a student?s Indi/idualiCed Education Program 3IEP4 or )5&
Accommodation Plan take precedence o/er pro/isions of
Proposition ##."
Ees$ The reuirements in a studentAs 'E( or +ection 50F Accommodation (lan
are federal legal reuirements and take precedence o%er the pro%isions of
(roposition 22H$ 'f either plan calls for primary language instruction, the
student does not need a parental e)ception wai%er to recei%e such instruction$
+tate and federal law reuire that E!s with an 'E( or a federal 50F
Accommodation (lan continue to recei%e the programs and ser%ices that
address the studentAs special needs, including linguistically appropriate goals
and o,3ecti%es$ At a minimum, instructional and linguistic ser%ices must
include the pro%ision of E!D and full access to the core curriculum as
specified in the studentAs written program or plan$
&# !hat ser/ices and types of instruction must ELs recei/e -hen
follo-ing an IEP or a %ection )5& Accommodation Plan"
An 'E( or +ection Accommodation 50F teams must determine which ser%ices
are appropriate for E!s, ,ased on their particular disa,ilities and le%el of
English proficiency$ /egardless of ser%ices prescri,ed, E!s must also recei%e
E!D instruction$
&$ For ELs -ith an IEP or %ection )5& Accommodation Plan@ are parent
notifications@ administration of assessments@ and e/aluation results
only to (e pro/ided in English"
0o$ +tate and federal law continue to reuire that parent notifications for E!s
,e pro%ided in the parentAs primary language unless it is not practica,le$
+tudent assessments must ,e conducted in the studentAs primary language$ 'f
it is clearly not feasi,le or appropriate, the student must still recei%e %alid
alternati%e assessments$ The results of the assessments must ,e presented
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 12 of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
to the parents in a language that they can understand "CC/, Title 5, sections
@0F0 >,? and "C 56@20>a?#$
&& !ho should refer an EL for %pecial Education and under -hat
circumstances"
All instructional personnel are responsi,le for referring an E! student through
the locally adopted referral process if a disa,ility is suspected$ (arents may
also reuest an assessment in writing$ 'E( teams must determine whether an
E! student meets the eligi,ility criteria for special education and reuires
special education and related ser%ices in order to ,enefit from this
educational program$ A determination that the learning difficulty is not the
result of cultural or linguistic di%ersity is also made$ +tudents should not ,e
referred for special education solely on the ,asis that they do not understand
or are limited in their a,ility to understand English$ To do so would %iolate ,oth
state and federal laws which protect the educational rights of these children$
&) !hat credentials or qualifications are required for teachers of ELs -ith
disa(ilities"
All linguistic and academic ser%ices for E!s with disa,ilities descri,ed in their
'E(s or +ection 50F Accommodation (lans must ,e pro%ided ,y ualified
teachers who ha%e credentials that authoriBe instruction to students with
disa,ilities and E!s$ +pecial education instruction must ,e pro%ided ,y:
"1# a teacher with ,oth a special education and the appropriate E! credential
or certificate "&C!AD, C!AD, +& 1D6D, or +& 2D1@#G or "2# ,y a team of
teachers with the appropriate credentials$
<,8E9 QEE%,I<:%

&+ !hat is the Language Census 39*$54"
't is an annual data collection on students with non2English language
,ackgrounds$ 't includes data pertaining to E! and 8E( students, instructional
settings, staff who pro%ide ser%ices to E!s and other related information$
"CC/, Title 5, section 1@0H#$ 8reuently asked uestions are a%aila,le at
http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ds9dc9lc$
&. Are school and district English Learner Ad/isory Committees required"
Ees$ These committees are still reuired and their legal responsi,ilities remain
unchanged "CC/, Title 5, section 11@04#$
&1 Does the CDE re/ie- districts? compliance -ith EL regulations"
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 1@ of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
All schools are su,3ect to re%iew through the Categorical (rogram ;onitoring$
;ore information is a%aila,le at http:99www$cde$ca$go%9ta9cr9cc.
&2 Are schools still required to pro/ide information to parents in their
primary language"
Ees$ *hen 15 percent or more of the pupils enrolled in the school speak a
single primary language other than English, all notices, reports, statements,
or records sent ,y the school or district to the parent9guardian of any such
pupil must, in addition to ,eing written in English, ,e written in such primary
language, and may ,e responded to ,y the parent or guardian in English or in
the primary language$ 'n addition, federal law reuires that schools and
districts pro%ide information in an understanda,le format and to the e)tent
practica,le in a language that is understanda,le to the parent, regardless of
percentage of students that speak a language other than English ""C F4D45G
0C!& 1111>h?>6?>C? and @@02 >c?#$
)5 !hen is the use of primary language permitted for instruction for pre*
school for ELs"
There are no statutory pro%isions that address the use of the primary
language in programs designed for pre2school pupils$ !EAs, unless reuired
,y the legal pro%isions of a specific funding source, ha%e fle)i,ility in deciding
the use of instructional approaches that use the primary language as a
medium of instruction or the o,3ecti%e of instruction$
)1 'ay ELs participate in 9eading First"
/egardless of program placement, any E! student may participate in /eading
8irst$ The program is a%aila,le in English and has two parallel %ersions in
+panish "oro 2$ierto and 6e!tura#$ 't should ,e noted that the goal of
/eading 8irst is to ha%e students reading at grade le%el in English ,y the end
of grade three$
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 1F of 15
California Department of Education August 21, 2006
AC9<:F'%
A'A<G Annual 'easura(le Achie/ement <(Decti/e
BCLADG Bilingual cross*cultural language and academic de/elopment
CELD,G California English Language De/elopment ,est
CLADG Cross*cultural language and academic de/elopment
DELACG District English learner ad/isory committee
EIA*LEPG Economic impact aid*limited*English proficient
ELG English Learner
ELDG English language de/elopment
ELACG English learner ad/isory committee
FEPG Fluent*English proficient
I*FEPG Initial fluent*English proficient
LEPG Limited*English proficient
L1 G Primary language
9*FEPG 9edesignated fluent*English proficient
9*$5G Annual Language Census 9eport 3form 9$5*LC4
%DAIEG %pecially*designed academic instruction in English
%EIG %tructured English immersion
%,%G %tandards*Based ,est in %panish
8reuently Asked .uestions "8A.s# for E!s in California
(age 15 of 15