English Language Learners (ELL)
The purpose of the ELL program is to assist students to develop the language skills and knowledge necessary for success in Canadian schools and society. ELL services are designed to strengthen the intellectual, social and career development of ELL students by helping them to:
- improve their ability to communicate fluently in English at school and in the wider community.
- acquire the English needed to make academic progress within the B.C. school system and realize their potential.
- develop their other skills (e.g., numeracy, scientific understanding, group participation).
- develop an understanding of the similarities and differences between their home culture and the Canadian culture.
Assessment and Placement
ELL students already in the district are formally assessed by an ELL specialist once a year and the results are recorded on the Annual Instructional Plan. The ELL program will be adjusted and updated as the student progresses in their English language development.
When students are assessed, there are 5 standardized categories used to help understand the level of support they may need. The ELL standards (as described by the BC Ministry of Education, within their ELL Standards documents, 2017) are:
- Beginning — the student is in the beginning stages of language development
- Developing — the student is showing progress in developing their language skills
- Expanding — the student is expanding in their language development to further access classroom learning outcomes
- Consolidating — the student is consolidating their language skills in the academic environment
- Bridging — the student is bridging to the grade-level language proficiency of their peers.
For more information, please refer to the BC Ministry of Education ELL Standards. https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/education/kindergarten-to-grade-12/teach/pdfs/ell/ell-standards-full.pdf
Schools provide various levels of ELL instruction to meet the developing needs of ELL students. The ELL programs in the district are designed to address both the communication and academic needs of ELL students from beginner levels to advanced levels. Teachers, as they help students to move through the levels, ensure that students will be able to cope with the demands of the next level. Students can participate in school activities, clubs and sports teams which greatly enhance their English language skills and build connections with Canadian culture.