Federal Programs Title Plans



Local Education Agency (LEA) Name:


Winston County

LEA Contact for ELs:


Dr. Shandy Porter



Shandy Porter



Shandy Porter

Position and Office:


Administrative Asst. Supt.

Email Address:










Check box if LEA receives Title III Funds

Check box if LEA receives an Immigrant Grant


The LEA will:

Assure that the LEA consulted with teachers, school administrators, parents, and, if appropriate, education-related community groups and institutions of higher education in developing the plan

Assure that all teachers in any language instruction educational program for English Learners (ELs) that is funded with any source of federal funds are fluent in English, including having written and oral communication skills

Assure that all schools in the LEA are in compliance for serving English learners

Assure that all individuals used as translators or interpreters are fluent in the language they are translating.

Assure ELs have equal access to appropriate categorical and other programs and are selected on the same basis as other children

(The following assurances apply only to LEAs that receive Title III funds)

Assure that the LEA has a process for parents to waive Title III Supplemental Services.

Assure that the LEA has an Equitable Services Implementation plan, if applicable.

Assure timely and meaningful consultation with private school officials regarding services available to ELs in private schools that are located within the geographic boundaries of the LEA, if applicable


EL Program Administrator Signature and Date

LEA Superintendent Signature and Date

*EL Advisory Committee Signatures

Comprehensive English Learner District Plan

Each LEA in Alabama must develop and implement a Comprehensive English Learner (EL) District Plan, in accordance with Section 3115 of Title III of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) for serving students who are English learners and immigrant students, where one or more students are determined to need support. The LEA is required to have a Comprehensive EL District Plan whether or not the LEA currently has ELs enrolled and regardless of Title III eligibility.

The Comprehensive EL District Plan should address each aspect of the instructional program for all ELs, at all grade levels, and in all schools in the school system. The Comprehensive EL District Plan should: contain sufficient detail and specificity so that all employees can understand how the plan is to be implemented; and should contain the procedural guidance and forms used to carry out responsibilities under the plan.

To facilitate LEA compliance and the Alabama State Department of Education (SDE) review of the plan, LEAs will develop the Comprehensive EL District Plan using the template included at the end of the checklist. LEAs may refer to the EL Policy and Procedures Manual when developing and revising the plan for a clear understanding of the requirements for serving ELs. The EL Policy and Procedures Manual was developed by the Alabama State Department of Education and is available for downloading at www.alsde.edu/departmentoffices/federalprograms.



Section II Checklist




The LEA’s educational theory and goals for its program of services – to improve the education of English learners by assisting the children to learn English and meet the challenging state academic standards. (Sec. 3102)


1) Include the LEA’s procedures for identifying members for the EL Advisory Committee.

The EL Advisory committee is formed under the guidance of system EL coordinator Shandy Porter.  Stakeholders from all schools are included in the development of the system EL plan.  Counselors from all schools are included in the committee as they serve as the local EL coordinators. English Learner Committee: Each school shall form an EL Committee consisting of a school administrator, a content area teacher, an EL instructor (if applicable), the school counselor, and others as designated by the principal. The EL’s parent will be invited to participate in EL Committee decisions. The committee shall review all relevant information and determine appropriate placement and exit from the EL program for all EL’s. 


2) Include the LEA’s methods for identifying, placing, and assessing the students to be included in the English language instruction educational program. The following components must be explained in the plan.

• Home Language Survey

• WIDA Online Screener

• WIDA-ACCESS Placement Test (W-APT) for Kindergarten

• WIDA Measure of Developing English Language (MODEL) for Kindergarten

• ACCESS for ELLs 2.0®

Home Language Survey: The Home Language Survey shall be administered to every student at the time of enrollment and placed in the student's permanent record file. The survey will be signed by the parent or guardian.


Potential English Learners (EL): Home Language Surveys which include any language other than English on any question must be referred to the school's EL coordinator within three (3) school days. The EL teaacher/instructor will gather information on the student and administer the W-APT (WIDA Access Placement Test) to determine the level of English language proficiency within ten (10) school days of enrollment. Interpreters may be available upon request. The information will be provided to the EL Committee for review and possible placement of the student in the English language instruction educational program. (The English language instruction educational program will be referred to as the EL program hereafter in this document.)



Parental Notification: According to Title III, ESSA each Local Education Agency (LEA) shall, "not later than thirty (30) days after the beginning of the school year, inform a parent or the parents of a limited-English proficient child identified for participation in, or participating in" an English language instruction program. 


3) Include the method and procedures for exiting students from the English Language Instruction Educational program (LIEP) and for monitoring their progress for a period of at least four years (new in ESSA), and at a minimum, follow SDE exiting requirements for ELs. All school personnel should be aware of the State established exit criteria of a composite score of 4.8 on the ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® English language proficiency test.

ELs will tested using the WIDA ACCESS test and must obtain a score of at least 4.8 (Composite Score) in order to be eligible to exit the EL program.  EL students will continue to be monitored during data meetings (RTI/PST) for at least two years after they exit the program.



1) Describe the programs and activities that will be developed, implemented, and administered to ensure that ELs acquire academic language as part of the core LIEP.

• Process the system uses to conduct a comprehensive needs assessment

• Rationale for selecting the particular EL program/s and how they are evidence-based

The EL counselor/staff members who have completed the appropriate assessment training and certification will administer the W-APT (WIDA ACCESS Placement Test) to all potential ELs within eight (8) days of identification. Each spring the ACCESS for ELs will be administered to all EL students by the counselor who has participated in the assessment training and have been certified to administer the assessment. 


The W-APT is the primary instrument utilized to determine the initial level of English language proficiency for program placement. The ACCESS for ELs is an annual assessment that indicates the progress students have made from year to year and annual proficiency level. Both the W-APT and the ACCESS for ELs measure speaking, listening, reading, and writing across the WIDA English Language Proficiency Standards for English Language Learners in Kindergarten through Grade 12 (2004). The standards are:


1. English Learners communicate in English for social and instructional purposes within the school setting.


2. English Learners communicate information, ideas, and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of LANGUAGE ARTS.


3. English Learners communicate information, ideas, and concepts necessary


    for academic success in the content area of MATHEMATICS.


4. English Learners communicate information, ideas, and concepts necessary


    for academic success in the content area of SCIENCE.


5. English Learners communicate information, ideas, and concepts necessary


    for academic success in the content area of SOCIAL STUDIES.




The W-APT and ACCESS for ELS will be administered in grade level clusters as follows:




Grades 1-2


Grades 3-5


Grade 6-8


Grades 9-12


W-APT, ACCESS for ELs, state assessments, and any other available norm referenced test scores, in addition to prior academic record information will be noted on the EL Student Referral and Placement Form by the EL instructor. This form will be provided to the EL Committee within eight (8) days of identification for a placement decision. The Committee will review all available information to make a recommendation for the most appropriate placement decision. All assessments, recommendations, and placements should be completed immediately after identification.




According to Title III, ESSA, each LEA shall, "not later than thirty (30) days after the beginning of the school year, inform a parent or the parents of a limited-English proficient child identified for participation in, or participating in" an English language instruction program, about the details of the program as instructed in the parental notification section of this document (see section XI). If a student has not been identified for participation in an English language instruction educational program prior to the beginning of the school year, the LEA must carry out the parent notification requirements within two (2) weeks of a student being placed in such a program. The most current test results and EL Student Referral and Placement Form will be placed in the student's cumulative folder by the designated member of the EL Committee. Copies can be made by the appropriate personnel as needed.






2) Describe how language instruction educational programs will ensure that ELs develop English proficiency:

• How data is used to improve the rate of language acquisition for ELs

• How the LEA supports each school with respect to continuous improvement practices and specific professional development

• How World-class Instructional Design and Assessment English language proficiency (WIDA ELP) standards are integrated into the curriculum

The W-APT is administered on an individual basis after a student has been initially identified as a potential EL upon enrollment. The score from the W-APT facilitates the EL committee’s discussion and decision of whether a student receives EL services because it indicates the student’s language level. The result also facilitates the placement of a student into a Tier for the administration of the ACCESS for ELs. The chart below demonstrates five of the six language levels and demonstrates how each level corresponds with a tier (Understanding the ACCESS for ELs Test, 2). Level 6 is exit.






The ACCESS for ELs is administered each spring in accordance to the testing calendar set forth by the Alabama State Department of Education. The online ACCESS 2.0 will be administered to students during the 2015-2016 school year. All Kindergarten students are assessed individually. Students in grades 1-12 take the speaking test individually and the listening, reading and writing in small group with students of the same tier.




Students scoring less than a 4.8 composite score will participate in the EL program based on their level of proficiency and grade level in accordance with the decision of the EL Committee.


Specific components of the LEA’s ESL program

Kindergarten students receive S(Satisfactory in meeting classroom objectives), U(Unsatisfactory in meeting classroom objectives), or N(Needs to improve on meeting classroom objectives). First through twelfth grade students receive a letter or numerical grade (A, B, C, D, F).




Teachers of EL students should refer to the accommodations chart (or I-ELP plan) for each EL student. Some students will not receive accommodations in every content area. Classroom teachers will complete the Classroom Monitoring Form for EL Students at each grading period to document/verify that the appropriate designated accommodations have been implemented.




Written documentation justifying failing grades at each grading period, including student work samples, must be presented to the EL committee for review and maintained in the student’s EL portfolio. The classroom teacher must have a verbal discussion with parents in a conference or by phone and appropriate documentation must be on file.




Classroom accommodations are determined by the EL committee. Each teacher will receive a copy of the accommodations that are appropriate for each student. As a student gains English proficiency, the EL committee will make changes to the accommodations.




The EL committee will meet on a regular basis, preferably every grading period, to review the progress of each EL student. In addition, meetings are called as needed throughout the year. Many of these meetings will take place during regularly scheduled school data meetings as EL students are monitored through RTI.




3) Describe the grading and retention policy and procedures. NOTE: ELs cannot fail or be retained if language is the barrier.

Traditional procedures for assigning grades to students may not be appropriate for EL students. The same methods and criteria applied to their English-speaking age and/or grade peers cannot always be used to assess students who lack English language proficiency. Teachers should be encouraged to maintain high expectations for student learning and should accommodate and adapt lessons and assignments so that ELs can progress.




Likewise, assessments should be modified so that students can demonstrate their knowledge and






A student may not be assigned a failing grade in a content area on the basis of lack of English


language proficiency (Section I, Part G, Guidelines to Satisfy Legal Requirements of Lau v.


Nichols). The key to appropriate grading of ELs is appropriate instructional accommodations. Even


non-English proficient students can learn content while acquiring English. If content teachers are


unsure how to accommodate ELs, they should seek in-service or other training. Prior to considering


retention of an EL, the following points should be addressed by the EL Committee.


What is the student’s level of English language proficiency?

Has an Individual English Language Plan (I-ELP) been implemented to document classroom modifications and student progress?

To ensure meaningful participation, are classroom accommodations being made in the areas of:

Teacher lesson delivery?

Activities and assignments?


Formal and informal assessments (e.g., quizzes and tests)?

How much individual English language development instruction is the student receiving during the school day?

Has an alternate grading strategy been implemented (e.g., a portfolio, checklist, teacher observation, or rubric assessment on content and language objectives)? 

Has the student’s classroom teacher been adequately trained with instruction and assessment strategies specifically designed for students learning English?

Do the reports cards indicate that students were graded according to their I-ELPs?



It may be more appropriate for beginning ELs to receive alternate progress monitoring grades such as S for Satisfactory, I for Improving, or N for Needs Improvement. Alternative assessment is a preferred option for LEP students. Implementation of alternative assessments includes, but is not limited to, asking students to prepare portfolios, present projects or oral reports, make lists and other products that express what students have learned, or use rubrics. 



Students in Grades 9-12 must be given the opportunity to earn credits toward graduation. Students should be given grades on work done with modifications and accommodations. Teachers must keep in mind that LEP students work under a dual burden: learning a new language and learning new content in a language they have not yet mastered.




Teachers must follow these guidelines:


• ELs must receive accommodations on content work when needed.


• Grading is based on accommodated work.


• ELs must not be failed on the basis of lack of English language proficiency.


• Grades placed in a student’s cumulative folder must reflect the student’s academic achievement


   on grade level academic content and student academic achievement standards.




If a student can demonstrate knowledge and skills in a particular subject, i.e., math, he/she should be assigned an achievement grade.




Other Suggestions for Grading:


• Designate on the report card that the student is not fully proficient in English by writing “EL” or by adding an asterisk (*) to the grade. This can be followed by a description of the student’s most recent English language proficiency level from an approved language proficiency assessment.


• Assign a grade and follow it with explanatory comments.


• Indicate whether the student is “at” or “above,” or “below” expectations with regard to learning objectives instead of assigning a letter grade. Include a narrative to explain the rating.


• Describe progress over time in narrative form with examples of student work.


• Develop an individualized education plan and assign a grade relevant for plan objectives. 





4) Include details on the specific staffing and other resources to be provided to English learners under the LIEP in the district. ESL staff should be qualified with academic preparation in English-as-a-second-language, e.g. as documented in the 1991 Office of Civil Rights (OCR) Memorandum.

• Qualified personnel (state certification and/or ESL licensure)

• ESL staff development

• Content teacher and administrator staff development

Winston County Schools offers the core program (Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol-SIOP) for English Learners in the regular classroom of the core academic teachers.   ELs participate the majority of the school day in regular academic classes and/or special programs. Content area teachers modify instruction to meet individual EL needs. English language acquisition services will be delivered through regular core instruction.  Ongoing professional development is provided to classroom teachers in strategies for appropriate accommodations. Some of these accommodations include oral rather than written assignments, oral testing, extra time to complete assignments, shortened assignments, alternative assignments, and tutoring. All teachers have received training in Makes Sense Strategies through Lee vs. Macon training. Furthermore, the LEA will sponsor professional development activities to equip teachers with strategies for instructing and accommodating ELs.


Resources, such as bilingual dictionaries, picture dictionaries, translated documents, notices, and letters, hand held audio cassette players, electronic pocket translators, etc. are placed in the school’s library or provided by the EL teacher.  


New secondary ELs are placed in less language dominant classes but not necessarily less challenging classes. Spanish speaking students may be placed in advanced Spanish classes to maintain or promote a high level of literacy in their first language and to provide additional support for the transition to second language acquisition. High school ELs may acquire elective credit for EL classes. ELs are not to be pulled out of physical education, art, music and other such courses. ELs are to be made aware of career-technical courses and extracurricular activities that are available. An interpreter may be used when available. ELs should be considered for the gifted program and other special programs offered by the school system if academic performance indicates a possible need.


SIOP training was provided to local EL coordinators who provided SIOP training to teachers at their respective schools to support instruction to the EL students.






5) Describe how the LEA will collect and submit data in accordance with SDE requirements.

• How schools are trained to use the state system/database to code ELs and enter reliable and accurate data

ELs are assessed annually by the EL staff, using the W-APT and ACCESS for ELs, to determine progress in English language acquisition. All ELs will participate in the State Assessment Program. No student shall be excluded from participation in the state’s required assessments. These scores are collected and reviewed by the EL Committee and the EL Program Area Specialist.




The law requires effective instruction that: (1) leads to the timely acquisition of proficiency in


English and (2) provides teaching and learning opportunities so that each student can become


proficient in the state’s academic content and student academic achievement standards within the


specified time frame that is expected for all students. The English language instruction educational


program for ELs may emphasize English temporarily over content subjects. The special instruction


in English language development may be discontinued when the student becomes proficient. The


school, however, is obligated to provide any assistance needed to remedy academic deficits that may


have occurred in other subjects while the student was focusing on learning English. If a student is


identified as English-proficient on a reliable and valid language proficiency test and scores below


grade level in core academic subjects, the school system must assist the student in eliminating the


deficiencies. If the student exits the English language instruction educational program, efforts to


eliminate the deficiencies may continue through the regular program and any supplemental programs


and/or services that are available to other students who are eligible for such services.




6) Include the LEA’s method for evaluating the effectiveness of its program for English learners

• LEA engagement in the continuous improvement cycle

• In relation to English proficiency ad challenging state academic standards

The EL will remain in the EL program until he/she scores at the “proficient level” (composite


score of 4.8 or higher) on the state English language proficiency test and at Level III “ Meets the


standard” on reading portions of the ARMT, attains benchmark on the spring DIBELS, or passes the


reading portion of the AHSGE. The W-APT will be administered upon identification and the


ACCESS for ELs will be administered each spring. The W-APT may also be administered anytime


during the school year at the request of the EL teacher, the regular teacher, the principal, or the


parents. All state assessments, including the ACCESS for ELs, are given as scheduled by the State


Department of Education.  All required data is collected and submitted to the SDE.


7) Include LEA’s method of identification and referral of ELs for special services (including Gifted Ed) Note that the Individual English Language Plan must describe how the school will communicate with the child and parent in their native language.

Upon completion of all evaluation material and information, the Referral Eligibilty Meeting Committee will meet to determine if the student qualifies for special education services. ELs are eligible for all special education services, including the Gifted and Talented Program, on the same basis as the native English-speaking students. The Special Education Specialist is the primary administrator responsible for the provision of services to all special education students.





1) Describe how the LEA will encourage and hold schools accountable for annually measuring the English proficiency of ELs and for participating in the state-administered testing program.

• Including coordination with the LEA Test Coordinator/Director

• Including communication of assessment and accountability requirements to schools

District EL Corrdinator and District Test Coordinator will monitor the folowing:


Percent of ELs making Adequate Progress in Language Acquisition


Percent of ELs attaining English language Proficiency


Meeting State Requirements for the EL Subgroup at the LEA Level




2) Describe how the LEA will hold schools accountable for meeting proficiency and long term goals.

• Monitoring and evaluating school engagement with continuous improvement plan

When the student achieves the exit criteria level, the EL teacher will petition the EL Committee for the student to exit the program. The EL Committee will request permission from the parent for the EL student to exit the program. When a student exits the EL program, the EL teacher will monitor the student's progress for a period of two years. The student will not be monitored after the second year unless he/she is referred back to the EL Committee. At the end of two years, a student who is achieving at grade level will officially exit the program.


There is no time limit for participation in the EL program. Need is the determining factor, and a student may participate as long as the EL Committee determines the student eligible.




Criteria for Exiting:


1. ACCESS for ELs score indicating overall proficiency (Composite score of 4.8 or higher)


2. Proficient scores on the state assessments


       K-2                                   Benchmark on the spring administration of DIBELS


                  3-8                                     Level III or higher on reading portion of the ARMT


     Grade 9                              Defer to grade 8 scores


           Grades 10-12          Passing the reading portion of the AHSGE


        3. Having a passing grade without accommodations in core content classes (math, science, social 


            studies and English).


 4. Teacher observation indicating student readiness to work in the classroom on regular   


     curriculum activities without accommodation or assistance.



Steps for Exiting:


1. The EL Committee shall make a recommendation for exiting a student from the EL program based on the above stated criteria.


2. The EL Student Referral and Placement Form marked for exit shall be completed and filed in the student's cumulative record folder.


3. Written notice shall be provided to the parents within five (5) school days by the EL Committee that their child is to be exited from the EL Program.


4. After a student is exited from the EL program, a follow-up review will be made within the first two weeks to verify that the student can compete academically and to check on the student’s social and psychological adjustment.


5. If the student is not academically successful, or does not pass course work without


accommodations after exiting from the EL program, the student can be recommended for


reclassification and reenrolled in the EL program and/or other appropriate programs which meet the


need for English language instruction.





1) Describe how the LEA will inform EL parents using information and notification in the following format:

According to current federal requirements, LEAs must, not later than 30 days after the beginning of the school year, provide notification to parents related to

1. The reasons for the identification.

2. The child’s level of English proficiency.

a. How such level was assessed.

b. The status of the child’s academic achievement.

3. The method of instruction used in the program

4. How the program will meet the educational strengths and needs of the child.

5. How the program will specifically help their child learn English and meet age-appropriate academic achievement standards for grade promotion and graduation.

6. The specific exit requirements for such program, expected rate of transition from such program into the regular education classroom, and the expected rate of graduation from secondary school.

7. In the case of a child with a disability, how the program meets the objectives of the individualized education program of the child.

8. Information pertaining to parental rights that includes written guidance detailing:

a. The right of the parents to have their child immediately removed from supplemental Title III programs upon request. (IF APPLICABLE)

b. The options that parents have to decline to enroll their child in such supplemental Title III programs or to choose another program or method of instruction if available. (IF APPLICABLE)

c. The various programs and methods of instruction if more than one program or method is offered by the eligible entity.

If a student has not been identified for participation in an English language instruction


educational program prior to the beginning of the school year, the EL Committee must carry


out the parent notification requirements within two (2) weeks of a student being placed in such a






The notice to parents shall be printed in English and/or the parents' primary language. Parents are not required to respond affirmatively to the notification for the student to participate in the English language instruction educational program. Upon receipt of written instructions from the parent, however, the EL Committee must withdraw the student from the formal English language instruction educational program. The teachers and school are still obligated to provide appropriate, informal strategies to ensure that the student’s English language and academic needs are met.




If parents refuse services, a Denial to Participate Form should be signed by the parents and placed in the student's Cumulative Record Folder by the EL instructor. The school district is still required to make accommodations in instruction and monitor the student's academic performance. Although the parent has denied EL services for the student, the student must continue to participate in the annual English Language Proficiency testing (ACCESS for ELs) until attaining proficiency. 




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