The three top ways that federal stimulus funds are being used to improve schooling for English-language learners are to improve the quality of teachers, step up services at the middle and high school levels, and increase instructional time through after-school or summer programs, according to a survey conducted by the Working Group on ELL Policy. The organization is made up of researchers who specialize in studying ELLs and make recommendations on federal policy for such students.
The working group has also posted on its Web site, which was launched today, a case study of how the St. Paul school district in Minnesota is using stimulus funds for ELLs. I included that district in an article I wrote back in May about how four large urban districts are targeting English-learners with funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The case study gives a lot more detail about the St. Paul district’s plans than I provided. For example, it says that stimulus funds will help to pay for K-5 reading materials, which benefit ELLs in that they include a strong oral-language component.
If you’ve been following this blog, you know that recently I’ve had the chance to report on the importance of the teaching of oral language to English-learners and other students who are at risk academically.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Learning the Language blog.