Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban

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  • Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban Public Schools, 2012-13 Council of the Great City Schools

    An analysis of the quality and accessibility of instructional materials for ELL students in the nations urban public school systems

    2012-2013

  • Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban Public Schools, 2012-13

    C o u n c i l o f t h e G r e a t C i t y S c h o o l s

    Page i

    About the Council of the Great City Schools

    The Council of the Great City Schools is a coalition of 67 of the nations largest urban school systems. The mission of the Council is to advocate for urban public schools and to assist them in their improvement. To meet that mission, the Council provides services to its members in the areas of legislation, research, communications, curriculum and instruction, and management.

  • Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban Public Schools, 2012-13

    C o u n c i l o f t h e G r e a t C i t y S c h o o l s

    Page ii

    Table of Contents Table of Contents ............................................................................................................................ ii

    Table of Figures .............................................................................................................................. ii

    Tables ............................................................................................................................................. iii

    Executive Summary ........................................................................................................................ 1

    Introduction ..................................................................................................................................... 3

    Methodology ................................................................................................................................... 4

    Teacher and Student Characteristics ............................................................................................... 5

    Classroom Instruction and the Common Core State Standards ...................................................... 8

    The Quality and Value of Instructional Materials for ELLs ......................................................... 12

    Conclusion and Recommendations ............................................................................................... 18

    Participating CGCS Districts ........................................................................................................ 19

    Table of Figures

    Figure 1. Percentage of CGCS respondents by position/title (n=284) .......................................... 6 Figure 2. Percentage of CGCS respondents reporting subjects taught (n=284) ............................ 6 Figure 3. Percentage of CGCS respondents with ELL certification (n=284) ................................ 7 Figure 4. Percentage of CGCS respondents indicating the percentage range of ELL students at their school (n=250) ........................................................................................................................ 7 Figure 5. Percentage of CGCS respondents selecting statement that best describes ELL instruction at their school (n=218) .................................................................................................. 9 Figure 6. Percentage of CGCS respondents who feel prepared to implement instructional shifts required by the common core (n=252)............................................................................................ 9 Figure 7. Percentage of CGCS respondents who feel prepared to use specific strategies to ensure ELLs meet the common core (n=252) ............................................................................................ 9 Figure 8. Percentage of CGCS respondents ranking factors in order of impact they would have on their ability to instruct ELLs (n=218) ...................................................................................... 11 Figure 9. Percentage of CGCS respondents rating the impact of the following factors on improving ELL performance ........................................................................................................ 11 Figure 10. Percentage of CGCS respondents indicating how they choose instructional materials for ELLs (n=218) .......................................................................................................................... 13 Figure 11. Percentage of CGCS respondents indicating their greatest challenges in selecting and procuring instructional materials for ELL students (n=218) ........................................................ 13 Figure 12. Percentage of CGCS respondents using various types of instructional materials for ELL students (n=284) ................................................................................................................... 15

  • Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban Public Schools, 2012-13

    C o u n c i l o f t h e G r e a t C i t y S c h o o l s

    Page iii

    Figure 13. Percentage of CGCS respondents rating ELL materials based on how well materials meet the following criteria ............................................................................................................ 15 Figure 14. Percentage of CGCS respondents rating ELL instructional materials by type of material ......................................................................................................................................... 16 Figure 15. Percentage of CGCS respondents rating ELL instructional materials by content area....................................................................................................................................................... 16 Figure 16. Percentage of CGCS respondents rating ELL instructional materials by grade level 17 Figure 17. Percentage of CGCS respondents rating ELL instructional materials by levels of English language proficiency ........................................................................................................ 17

    Tables

    Table 1. Percentage of CGCS respondents who feel prepared to implement the instructional shifts required by the common core by position/title, 2012 (n=252) ............................................ 10 Table 2. Percentage of CGCS respondents who feel prepared to use specific strategies to ensure ELLs meet the common core by position/title, 2012 (n=252) ...................................................... 10 Table 3. Percentage of CGCS respondents indicating their greatest challenge in selecting and procuring ELL instructional materials by the percentage of students considered ELL in school, 2012 (n=216) ................................................................................................................................ 14

  • Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban Public Schools, 2012-13

    C o u n c i l o f t h e G r e a t C i t y S c h o o l s

    Page 1

    Executive Summary The purpose of this report, Instructional Materials for English Language Learners in Urban Public Schools, is to examine how district- and school-level staff members acquire and use instructional materials for English Language Learners (ELLs). The report also answers questions regarding the preparedness of district and school staff members to ensure that ELLs attain the expectations embodied in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), including factors that practitioners believe are most important in promoting high ELL achievement. The Council of the Great City Schools (CGCS) worked in partnership with McKinsey & Company to conduct a national survey of teacher and ELL characteristics, instructional practices, and perceived quality of instructional materials for ELLs. (All responses are for the 2012-13 school year.) The Council then extracted responses provided solely by members of the organization and analyzed them for this report. This work by the Council was done in support of common cores implementation and efforts by the group to improve instructional materials for ELLs. Key findings include:

    Teacher and Student Characteristics In 2012, 46 percent of all respondents to this survey were ELL teachers/specialists, 13

    percent were district-level ELL coordinators, 10 percent were general education teachers, and two percent were school principals. Another 29 percent were made up of other school-based and district-level staff.

    Half of all respondents indicated that they had obtained an ESL/ELD license, certification,

    or endorsement. Another 38 percent had obtained an ESL/bilingual certification, while 19 percent did not have any ELL-related certifications.

    Nearly half of all respondents indicated that over 30 percent of the students at their school were ELL. Another 30 percent indicated that between 10 and 30 percent of the students at their school were ELLs.

    Classroom Instruction and the Common Core State Standards Approximately half of all CGCS respondents feel only somewhat prepared or not

    prepared at all to implement the instructional shifts required by the common core. About half of all CGCS respondents (51 percent) feel prepared or very prepared to use

    specific strategies to ensure that ELLs meet the requirements of the common core. The other half of respondents (49 percent) only felt somewhat prepared or not prepared to use strategies focused on ELLs to meet the demands of the common core.

    Respondents indicated that training more general education teachers and content teachers in ELL strategies wo