English Language Learners
The South Orangetown Central School District serves English Language Learners (ELLs) in specialized programs that best suit their individual language needs. We believe that all students and families deserve equal access to instructional programs and are committed to our district’s goal of graduation and college readiness for all students. We strive to support ELL students and their families in all areas and to strengthen the home-school connection.
The instructional approach includes a combination of pull-out and push-in English as a New Language (ENL) classes and core content classes geared towards English Language Learners, with a focus on both academic content and language development. Highly qualified teachers with English as a New Language certification are on staff in each of the district’s four schools which emphasize aligned instruction and inclusive learning environments.
At the elementary and middle school levels, students who have been identified as ELLs are grouped by level (beginner, intermediate or advanced) into cluster classes of no more than six students per class. This model enables ENL teachers to pull out students for small-group instruction, and in some cases, push-in to co-teach with classroom teachers.
At Tappan Zee High School, ENL teachers work with students in small groups to provide services for language acquisition and to help them succeed in their regular classes.
New York State Education Department Q&A
What is an English as a Second Language program?
For grades kindergarten through twelve, a free-standing English as a second language program shall mean a program of instruction composed of two components: a language arts instructional component and a content area instructional component. In an ESL class, specific methodologies and instructional materials that allow students to learn English systematically and cumulatively are used. Instruction shall take into account the first language and the culture of the students.
What is meant by the Language Arts instructional component?
The language arts instructional component shall include English language arts instruction and English as a second language instruction. The language arts instructional component for the beginning and intermediate levels of English proficiency in grades 1-12 is ESL instruction. The learning standards for English language arts (ELA) and English as a second language (ESL), and key ideas and performance indicators for such standards, shall serve as the basis for the ELA and ESL curricula, respectively.
What should ESL instruction include?
English as a second language instruction shall be designed to develop skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and communicating in English through the integration of academic content appropriate for the student’s age, grade level and English language skills. This instruction should be provided in substantially equal daily allotments of instructional time.
For how long must transitional services be provided under NCLB Title III?
Schools receiving federal funds under NCLB must monitor and provide transitional services to former Limited English Proficient (LEP)/ELL students for up to two years after they no longer meet the State’s definition for LEP.
For additional information, visit NYSED’s Bilingual Education page.