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What is EL?

English learners (ELs) - persons who have a native or primary language that is not English and who are learning the English language. English learners are also known as English language learners (ELLs), English as a second language (ESL), or as Limited English Proficient (LEP) students under current Alaska and federal regulations.

el Program
  • Standards-based instructional program designed to address the unique challenges faced by students whose first language is not English.
  • To be identified as an EL student, the student must meet all sections of the definition.
  • Students identified as EL in any Alaska school district qualify for English language development services and academic support.
  • Federal and state statutes require all districts to identify limited English proficient students and provide equal access to a high quality education by providing resources and services to assist those students in meeting the same academic standards and content that all students are expected to meet
Students in program will...
  • Develop proficiency in English language skills (listening, speaking, writing, reading and comprehension) while acquiring the academic content of the Alaska Common Core.
  • Receive all instruction in English to maximize students’ opportunity to master social and academic English language skills.
  • Be screened if their native language, home language, or first language is other than English.
  • Are tested in accordance with state procedures to determine whether they qualify for EL services.
  • Are tested annually with an English language proficiency measure (ACCESS) in accordance with Federal laws.
  • Annual testing is used to determine language progress and is one of the criteria used for exit from the EL program. Alaska regulation 4 AAC 34.055 requires all Alaska districts with a school that is attended by at least 8 EL students to file a Plan of Service for limited English proficient students with the department.
Language Proficiency
Levels of Language Proficiency
  • Level 1 – Entering
  • Level 2 - Emerging
  • Level 3 – Developing
  • Level 4 – Expanding
  • Level 5 – Bridging
Assessments

Screening

W-APT stands for the WIDA-ACCESS Placement Test. It is an English language proficiency "screener" test given to incoming students who may be designated as English language learners. It assists educators with programmatic placement decisions such as identification and placement of ELLs. The W-APT is one component of WIDA's comprehensive assessment system.
Features W-APT test items are written from the model performance indicators of WIDA's five English Language Proficiency (ELP) standards:
  • Social & Instructional Language
  • Language of Language Arts
  • Language of Mathematics
  • Language of Science
  • Language of Social Studies

ACCESS Testing

ACCESS for ELs 2.0 is a secure large-scale English language proficiency assessment administered to Kindergarten through 12th grade students who have been identified as English learners (ELs). It is given annually in WIDA Consortium member states to monitor students' progress in acquiring academic English. ACCESS for ELs 2.0 is only available to Consortium member states.
Features The tasks on the new summative assessment will continue to assess the language students need to process or produce in various school contexts. Each assessment item and task will target at least one of the five WIDA ELD Standards:
  • Social and Instructional Language
  • Language of Language Arts
  • Language of Mathematics
  • Language of Science
  • Language of Social Studies