Essential Elements for EL in Special Education and Developing IEP

English Learners and Special Education,
An Intersect of Challenges
February, 2013
Presented by
Magdalena Ruz Gonzalez, Project Director III
Division of Curriculum and Instructional Services,
Multilingual Support Unit
Dr. Joseph Rivera, Administrator
Division of Special Education,
Early Intervention Support Services,
p. 1
 To understand the how culturally and linguistically
appropriate RtI2 can improve outcomes for ELs
 To understand the linguistic and cultural bias inherent in
standardized assessments
 To learn legislation and litigation that protects ELs in
Special Education settings
 To identify appropriate instruction and IEPs for this
 The drop out rate is 15-20% higher for EL than
another subgroup.
 This lack of academic success is also the cause for
referrals to special education.
 Is your district overrepresented with ELs placed in
special education?
Legislation Governing ELs
 Civil Rights Act (1964) (1970) Requirements: avoid
labeling students mentally retarded based on criteria that
reflects their English proficiency.
 IDEA (1975) (1997)
ELs are not eligible for services if their learning problems
are primarily the result of environmental, cultural or
economic disadvantage.
Legislation Governing ELs
 IDEA (1975) (1997)
Evaluation and placement procedure must be conducted
in the native language, unless it is CLEARLY not
feasible to do so.
(EC 56320, EC 56001)
Assessment results must be considered by individuals
knowledgeable about the child, assessment, and
placement alternatives.
The multidisciplinary team must consider the language needs
of ELs when developing, reviewing or revising the IEP.
 Diana vs. CA State Bd. Of Ed (1970). One cannot identify a
child as mentally retarded based on IQ tests administered in
English. The child must be assessed in their first language.
 Larry P. vs. Riles. One cannot use IQ tests that do not take
into account the culture and experiences of children. Thus,
test must be valid for use with the specific populations.
 ELs are typically overrepresented or underrepresented in
Special Education across the country.
 ELs in special education with learning disabilities
demonstrate lower verbal and full scale IQ scores AFTER
placement in Special Education.
 ELs are not receiving the type of instruction they need in
regular education settings.
 ELs are not receiving the type of instruction they need in
special education settings.
Overrepresentation or
Cross Student Group Comparison-
 # of all ELs placed in special education divided by the
total # of ALL ELs in the LEA
197 placed = 19.7%
1,000 Total ELs in LEA
 # of non-ELs in special education
2,200 placed
= 11%
20,000 total Non-ELs in LEA
 ELs are overrepresented by 8.7%
Overrepresentation or
Within Group Comparison-
 % of total ELs compared with % of ELs in entire
special education population
ELs= 23% of total school
Thus, 23% of special education population should
be ELs
Prevention of ELs “Qualifying” for
Special Education
 A Culturally and Linguistically
appropriate RtI2
 Determine conditions that must be met
for referral for assessment
 Provide non-biased assessment and
interpretation of results
Culturally and Linguistically
Appropriate RtI2
 Tier 1 through 3 reflect a thorough understanding of
ELs proficiency levels and what students are
capable of doing
 High quality instruction: content and ELD
 Data discussions linked to EL instruction
 Materials are available at multi-levels and in native
Culturally and Linguistically
Appropriate RtI2
 Problem solving (individualized) versus program
 Instruction before intervention
 Demonstrate that an EL advocate on SST has
expertise to guide, interpret and facilitate discussions
at SST, design intervention programs and monitor
progress in a timely manner.
Conditions for Referrals
 Interventions have been well documented with sufficient
details and of sufficient duration and intensity.
 SST validates EL difficulties across content areas and
 Interventions have been conducted in both languages by
qualified trained individuals.
 Documentation of instruction clearly indicates learning
problems in both languages.
Conditions for Referrals
 The teacher used instructional strategies known to be
effective for ELs.
 Neither clinical teaching nor interventions resolved
learning difficulties.
 All general education alternatives have proven
 Documentation of parental involvement.
Essential Elements To Address
 Biased and Non-biased Assessments
 Use of Native Language
 Aides, Interpreters and Translators
 Parent Participation
 Teachers Cross-training
Can We Provide Non-biased
 There is no test that can rule out the learning
disability versus the language development issue.
 Standardized tests are normed on the majority
culture and language (Caesar & Kohler, 2007)
 Misinterpretations applied to data; discrepancy
formula and medical model
 Pitfalls of Parallel and Translated Tests
 Norms, Baselines and Ceilings
Issues of Traditional
 Linguistic Bias
 Cultural Bias
 Time Factor
 Equivalent English and other language
Receptive and Expressive One-Word Picture
Vocabulary Tests, Fourth Edition (EOWPVT-4,
An Example of Item Analysis
 Test for Auditory Comprehension Of
Language- Carrow
Kinder Student; 6-11 C.A.
 Results- English 4-8 A.E.
 By adding the credit of Spanish:
 Obtained a Bilingual score 6-5 A.E.
Use of Native Language
 Necessary in intervention and testing
 An English Learner will need bilingual testingno matter what CELDT level
 Watch for dialectical, regional and educational
 A necessity for low incidence English Learners
Aides, Interpreters and Translators
 Interpreters are “language on demand”
 Translators provide written translations
 Training in educational jargon, information, and
 Preview and training before the actual meeting
 Checking for meaning with “back translating”
Teachers and Paraprofessionals
Cross Training
 Language Development
 ELD and SDAIE methodology
 Special Education instructional modifications
specific to exceptionalities
 Testing modifications and adaptations
 Legal requirements
 Consultation model
Do ELs have appropriate
IEP Goals?
√ Content Area access through SDAIE
English Language Development
Goals and Language of
-For individuals whose native language is other than English,
linguistically appropriate goals, objectives, programs and
-ELD and content areas reflect linguistic support for EL.
ELD GOAL: Increase
Beginning Level
Objective: By__ (date)__, when given comprehensible
input, such as ______, the EL will respond to the
correct picture/object by (pointing, taking, walking
to, acting out) with ___% accuracy as measured by
__(records, observations).
Use of ELD/ELA standards or CELDT Blueprints are
ELA/Math or other Content
Goal (SDAIE)
Same as an English Only Student except define:
1) How the instruction will be modified or adapted
2) How the instruction will be delivered by language
proficiency level;
3) And what tasks are supported or instructed through
primary language.
CELDT: Diploma bound ELs
 Alternative: Testing out of grade span
ALPI: Lower Cognitive Skills
 Twenty Years of use
 For severely handicapped students
 Parent Interview
 Used for initial and ongoing English proficiency- instead of
 Cannot be used for reclassification
Reclassification of Special Education
ELs: Suggested by CELDT Guidelines
 1. Assessment of Language Proficiency using an
Objective Assessment Instrument
 2 Teacher Evaluation
 3. Parental Opinion and Consultation
 4. Student’s Score on an Assessment of Basic Skills such
CELDT Guidelines…
 “In accordance with with federal and state law, the local
IEP may address the individual needs of each English
learner with a disability using multiple criteria…”
p. 21 CELDT 2012-2013 Guidelines
Federal Guidelines as it relates to
ELs in Special Education
 Assessments with pupils of limited English proficiency shall
be administered in the child’s native language or mode of
communication, unless clearly not feasible to do so
(EC 56320, EC 56001)
 No single procedure is used as the sole criterion for
determining an appropriate educational program for an
individual child
(EC 56320, EC 56001)
What are your next steps ?
 Special Education Considerations for English
Learners: Delivering a Continuum of Services,
(2007) Hamayan, Marler, Sanchez-Lopez, and
Damico. Caslon Publishing.
 English Learners with Special Education Needs,
Alfredo Artilles and Alba Ortiz (2002) CAL.

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