In California, 40 percent of K–12 students are classified as language minorities — students for whom English is not a first language. While this statistic is higher than for many other states, English learners are the fastest growing student sub-population throughout the United States. How our schools effectively educate these students is a large and pressing topic.
In a new report from Policy Analysis for California Education, Robert Linquanti, former Project Director at WestEd, and Kenji Hakuta of Stanford University, recommend:
- Tracking the academic achievement of former English learners after they’ve reached proficiency
- Aligning English language development standards with the new math and upcoming science standards
- Reevaluating and potentially upgrading teacher education for instructing English learners
- Using the next-generation assessment to measure how all students, including English learners, handle sophisticated language
Although this report and recommendations are California-focused, they apply to English learners throughout the United States.