Education

Resource: A Portal for State Documents on ELLs

By Mary Ann Zehr — May 11, 2009 1 min read

Would you like to see California’s home-language survey for identifying students who speak a language other than English? How about Arizona’s waiver form for parents who want to request that their children be removed from “sheltered English immersion?” Anyone want to read New Jersey’s bilingual education code?

I found each of these documents with a few quick searches using a database of the Language Portal, run by the National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy, which is an arm of the Migration Policy Institute.

According to a promotional e-mail I just got for Language Portal, the Web site has more than 1,000 resources for teachers or administrators who work with ELLs or their parents. It has school district plans for such students and sample translated report cards and parent-notification forms.

In my searches, I typed in the name of a state and selected the keyword of “English-language learner.” I requested “all” documents in English.

I wasn’t able to pull up any documents from Illinois with that search, and I pulled up only one for Texas. A message on the site says the database is dependent on the availability of documents from states. I’ll have to see in the coming weeks how consistently I can pull up documents that I need for reporting. But it seems that at least for some states, it will be easier to use Language Portal rather than stepping out into the big wide world of the Internet to find them.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Learning the Language blog.