Georgia gives funds to schools for English-language learners in differing amounts depending on the distribution of such students across grade levels. For ELLs in K-3, the state provides funding for one segment—about a 45-minute period—of English-as-a-second-language instruction per school day. For students in grades 4-8, the state pays for two segments of ESL. For high school grades, it provides money for up to five periods of ESL. The state gave out $115 million in state funds (separate from the federal funds authorized by Title III of the No Child Left Behind Act) in the 2007-08 school year, according...


The Brownsville Independent School District in Texas was awarded the 2008 Broad Prize for Urban Education today for being "the most improved urban school district." Among the reasons the district received the prize is because its Hispanic and low-income students outperformed their peers at other similar Texas districts in reading and math in all grades. The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation awarded the prize, which provides $1 million in college scholarship funds for seniors in the district who graduate next spring. See my colleague Dakarai I. Aarons' article, "Brownsville, Texas, Wins Broad Prize," just published at edweek.org. Here's a ...


The Core Knowledge Blog points out that as the performance equivalent of a mortgage balloon payment kicks in, which requires all testing subgroups to make a sudden leap in test scores, many schools in California aren't able to make adequate yearly progress under the No Child Left Behind Act. Robert Pondiscio hits the nail on the head in predicting: "Expect to hear this story over and over and over again." He notes how even successful California schools are having trouble making AYP. A quarter of California's students are ELLs, and that's a group that often presents a challenge for schools ...


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The U.S. Department of Education announced this week that it will provide $754,415 to the National Academy of Sciences to examine how federal funds under Title III of the No Child Left Behind Act can best be distributed to states. Title III is the section of the law that authorizes funds for English-language-acquisition programs. A December 2006 report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office recommended that the Education Department take a closer look at how Title III money is given out to states. The National Academy of Sciences is charged with evaluating the accuracy of the two ...


The federal government has sent to chief state school officers a letter reiterating that federal funds targeted for English-language learners may not be used to replace local, state, or other federal money that otherwise would be spent on such students. The Oct. 2 letter says that U.S. Department of Education officials encountered some "state and local practices" while monitoring programs for English-language learners that suggested a need for clarification. With the letter, the Education Department issued new guidance regarding the "supplement not supplant" provision of Title III of the No Child Left Behind Act, which authorizes funding for English-language-acquisition ...


The Women's Sports Foundation has documented through survey responses that immigrant girls are much less likely than girls who aren't immigrants to this country to participate in organized sports. This comes as no surprise, but not many organizations apparently go around asking the question. A report, "Go Out and Play," released by the foundation today, says that 43 percent of immigrant girls in families surveyed participate in organized sports, while 65 percent of girls in non-immigrant families surveyed do. The report defines an "immigrant family" as one in which at least one of the parents is born outside of the ...


From news coverage of the campaign trail, I conclude that the presidential candidates aren't talking about how best to educate English-language learners. And they are hardly raising the topic of immigration at all on the trail, except through ads in the Spanish-language media. But that hasn't stopped the Education Watch of the New York Times from featuring bilingual education, which Sen. Barack Obama publicly endorsed months ago, as a campaign issue. This week the New York Times followed up on the two commentaries it published recently on the issue with an opinion by Sandra Tsing Loh, a Los Angeles writer. ...


Schools "may" want to invest in bilingual or dual-language programs—"even if they appear costly," writes an adjunct law professor from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, in School Business Affairs. The professor is Scott Ellis Ferrin, who also chairs the department of educational leadership and foundations at that university. The article appears in the October issue of the magazine, which hasn't yet been posted online (some articles will be free and others not). Here's an excerpt of Mr. Ferrin's article, which offers a lukewarm endorsement of bilingual education. Educators are often told by policy makers and opinion polls that,...


The Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Ala., is soon to release a video that profiles Cesar Chavez, the activist who led a strike and grape boycott among farm workers in the 1960s. It's called "Viva La Causa: The Story of Cesar Chavez and the Great Movement for Social Justice." I often come across schools that are named after Cesar Chavez, and I have to wonder if those schools have educated their students about him. Numerous times I've interviewed students who attend a school named after some guy (usually a guy), but they can't tell me anything about that person. ...


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