Here are some nuggets I took away from “The Future of ELL Education” online chat that I moderated at edweek.org yesterday. Click here for the full chat transcript.
Question: “Considering that ELLs are not new to the history of our country, and are probably not proportionally greater than in other times in our history—do you think it is wise, in the long run, to forfeit the wider curriculum to concentrate on reading? I am worried that we are committing cultural suicide.” --Linda Johanssen, 3rd grade teacher, Los Angeles
Answer: “Even though ELLs are not new to the history of this country, I think we have not yet figured out how to teach the English language to them...” --Ana Sol Gutierrez, Maryland state legislator
Question: “What approaches and/or materials have demonstrated effectiveness for Students with Interrupted Formal Education?” --Elizabeth Roberts Scaduto, K-12 ESL Director, Riverhead, NY
Answer: “Rather than providing remedial programs that focus on basic skills, effective programs for these students anchor reading and writing strategies in content areas.” --Maria Santos, executive director of the office of English-language learners for New York City Public Schools
Question: “Is Arne Duncan capable of implementing policies that will help to meet the challenges of educating ELLs?” --Ben Ward, editor, ESL Magazine
“I think it would be difficult for anyone in the Obama administration to make a case against serving this increasingly large and politically vocal component of our student population...”
--Ellen Forte, president of edCount, LLC.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Learning the Language blog.