Effective Instruction for English Learners Professional Learning Pathway

Raylene Olinger

According to the Colorado Department of Education, the number of English learners in Colorado grew by 38%, now numbering approximately 126,000.  Colorado has the sixth highest numbers of English learners in the country.  In the spirit of equal access to quality education, new requirements have been added in order for new and existing educators to gain and renew licenses in Colorado, and better support the state’s language learners.

For existing educators, these new requirements require 45 hours (of the 90 required for license renewal) of professional learning that satisfy four professional learning standards:

  1. Foundations of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Education

  2. First and Second Language Acquisition

  3. Literacy Development for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students

  4. Teaching Strategies: Methods, Materials and Assessment for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students.

Existing educators in core endorsed areas will be required to meet this 45-hour requirement one time in their license history and may do so through an approved pathway, or previous professional learning/work experience (with the submission of the English Learner PD standards Matrix). Educators who currently hold a CLD or similar endorsement have already met the requirement.

In response to these requirements and in service to teachers and students in the NW BOCES the SEED team has created a professional learning pathway, recently approved by CDE.  This pathway is comprised of five modules totaling 45 hours.

  • Four 7.5 hour modules that provide direct instruction, collaboration, classroom implementation and reflection regarding Culturally Responsive Pedagogy, Language Learning, Literacy Skills, and Access to Content. (Meeting the above standards)

  • One 15 hour module that requires synthesis and application of content with coaching support.

Beginning in Spring of 2019, modules will be delivered in a variety of ways to meet the needs of educators. Module 1: Culturally Responsive Pedagogy and Module 2: Learning Language were offered for the first time in the Spring of 2019 in a virtual format. Subsequent modules will be offered virtually in Fall of 2019 and Spring of 2020. Educators in NW BOCES member districts can also take advantage of the modules offered in person in June of 2019.

Please contact seedics@nwboces.org with questions or for more information.