ESOL Program Description Print E-mail
Written by Karen Durfee   
A) LACS is a combined middle school and high school serving 305 students grades 6-12. Our school usually provides ESL instruction to students in a small group setting one or two periods per day depending upon required service needs. Given the small number of our total ESL student population and our decreased FTE allotted to serve these students, we often have a range of student ages served simultaneously, although our aim and preference is to offer instruction to our ESL students in a way that is developmentally appropriate based on age and skill. Instruction is given primarily in English.

Additionally, we aim to have the ESL teacher provide support to the entire staff as a consultant and a student advocate, if and when time permits. This could entail making recommendations for modifying assignments and curriculum, addressing concerns, assisting with assessment, and serving as a liaison between home and school. Again, with the very limited FTE (0.2), and the iterant nature of the position, these additional roles/responsibilities have diminished in recent time.

The LACS schedule has regular academic classes meeting four periods per week and inserting two half-day project splits. These project splits are available for the ESL teacher to schedule some additional time, if necessary, to provide additional instruction and support for students should it be recommended.
B) The school has been able to access a colleague in another school within the district to come and serve as a translator during parent-teacher conferences. When more FTE was assigned, our ESL teacher serves additionally as a family liaison and has frequent contact with families explaining the progress if their children in both our ESL program and also other classes and experiences at our school.
C) Our most recently enrolled ESL students join other new students at the start of the school year for a peer-led orientation of the school, and also contact typically is made by the ESL teacher to connect and support them as they begin learning the culture and expectations of the new school.
D) In conjunction with our district’s staff development office, the administrator of our ESL program provides ample opportunity for ESL teachers from each of Ithaca’s 12 schools to come together regularly and learn and grow collaboratively through trainings, guest speakers, and guided discussions.
E) We currently have one certified ESOL teacher serving in our school as an ESL teacher. This teacher is given 0.2 FTE ESL time to work to meet the needs of all our ESL students. Although she is currently unable to monitor and support students, recently exited from ESL due to testing out.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 21 December 2010 )
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