Quality Teaching for English Learners

WestEd’s Quality Teaching for English Learners (QTEL) is a unique professional development initiative that provides educators with the tools they need to help all students, particularly English language learners, achieve college and career readiness.

QTEL’s widely acclaimed professional development framework provides a coherent portfolio of professional learning opportunities aimed at developing teacher/leadership expertise and improving student learning in an era of Common Core State Standards and other new standards (e.g., Next Generation Science Standards, WIDA).

Teachers find the QTEL approach classroom-friendly and pragmatic. Because it is grounded in sociocultural learning theory (the Zone of Proximal Development and scaffolding theory are key), teachers experience QTEL as a compelling way to work with students. They learn concrete ways to challenge and support their English language learners’ development of language and literacy practices—and they understand why those strategies make sense.

Principles of Success

Six principles guide QTEL’s work with teachers and students:

  • Sustain academic rigor
  • Hold high expectations
  • Infuse metaprocesses in the education of English language learners
  • Engage in quality teacher and student interactions
  • Sustain a language focus
  • Develop a quality curriculum

These principles reflect the QTEL belief that teacher and student development is a consequence of (and not a prerequisite for) carefully planned opportunities to participate in meaningful and demanding academic activity with others.