ELL students at beginning and intermediate levels of English proficiency must have a minimum of one hour per day of direct services provided by a highly qualified ESL teacher. For beginning-level elementary students (WIDA 1.0-3.4 in Overall AND Literacy), the pull-out model is often used as it provides a learning environment without distractions. This approach also allows for children from several classrooms to be served during a given instructional hour, thereby providing services that best support language acquisition. Should students at beginning WIDA levels be served in a co-teching environment, it is advised that should these be RAELs, they are also served with an additional hour of English Language Development (ELD) within the RTI timeframe. Certainly, parallel literacy blocks (tier 1 instruction) conducted by certified ESL teachers is another option.
Students at higher levels of English proficiency (WIDA 3.6-4.9) may have more flexible scheduling that is tailored to meet their English language development needs. Inclusion/Collaborative teaching approaches (only) are more effective with ELs at high intermediate and advanced levels of proficiency and should include joint planning time for the collaborating teachers.
ESL course codes are available for middle and high school ESL classes and provide English instruction especially designed for speakers of other languages as outlined in Minimum Requirements for the Approval of Public Schools 0520-01-03-.05, (6) (a). Some of the course codes can be used for grade level groupings while others are for proficiency level groupings. Secondary EL students at beginning and intermediate levels of proficiency must have a minimum of one ESL class period per day.
Note: Scheduling of English as a Second Language classes during RTI or during exploratory time (library, art, music, P.E.) has the unintended effect of denying EL students access to exploratory subjects that are available to all other students.
ELL students in high school may use up to 2 ESL courses toward fulfillment of the English graduation requirement of 4 units. Recommended progression includes 2 ESL courses, then enrollment in English I, followed by English II. More advanced students may elect to enroll in English III & IV. Transitional ESL courses are designed as companion courses for regular English I, II, III, and IV. ESL courses beyond those used toward the English graduation requirements can be used as part of an elective focus in the Humanities area.