Subject: Re: Use of
instructional aides. I'm trying to locate information
about specific California laws and/or cases that revolve around delivery of ESL
instruction by instructional bilingual aides outside
of the classroom. Any guidance you can give me will be
I do have a few follow-up questions:
1) What does UNDER THE DIRECT GUIDANCE really mean? Does the teacher
have to have visual
proximity with the "teaching" instructional aide? Should
the guiding teacher plan all lessons/activities that the aide does?
Should the teacher meet daily with the instructional
aide to plan instruction? Does the teacher deliver tests and report results/give
progress reports if any? I guess I'm just
confused about how much guidance UNDER THE
DIRECT GUIDANCE AND SUPERVISION means. How much is
"any" guidance? What does an ideal, or even just
acceptable, amount of guidance look like when
the law is being followed? What does it look like when
the law is not being followed? There's probably a great deal
of "gray" area and each specific situation
would have to examined closely, but I'd appreciate any more details you think I
might be able to rely upon in my conversations with
THANK YOU so very much for your
interest in --and your VISIT to-- our Web Sites!!!
In California, as well as in OTHER
STATES, school districts must meet the requirements of legal
compliance that help provide "an equal educational opportunity and
equal access to the core curriculum" for ALL students, including
One of these very important legal
compliance requirements is that all necessary steps are taken by the
districts to provide QUALIFIED TEACHERS (that is, teachers with the
appropriate certification) to teach English as a Second Language (ESL)
or English Language Development (ELD) as it is usually referred to here
Now, there is a shortage of "qualified"
teachers in California, for ESL, for "Sheltered" content area
instruction, for primary language instruction, as needed. In some
cases, school districts may employ instructional aides to work UNDER THE
DIRECT GUIDANCE and supervision of a QUALIFIED TEACHER.
If what you are talking about is just
"removing" English Learners from a "regular" classroom --where they are
provided an academic program in the core content areas by a fully
certificated teacher-- to provide --in a separate room and without any
guidance from the QUALIFIED TEACHER-- some time to "do" something about
their English Language Development, I suggest you may
FIRST, discuss the situation with the
administrator in charge of English Language Learners and legal
compliance at your school or district, and
SECOND, contact immediately the
California Department of Education, Legal Compliance Unit, and discuss
Better yet, the parents of the
"removed" students should call the California Department of Education
and discuss the situation AFTER they themselves meet with the proper
administrator and request compliance with all legal requirements so
their students are afforded an "equal educational opportunity and equal
access to the core curriculum."
I am delighted to respond to your very
insightful and professional interest in the education of ALL your
students. THANKS for asking!!!
ANSWERS TO FOLLOW-UP
Hi, Valerie!!! How professional of
you to follow up your original questions with additional questions!!!!
THAT is what a GREAT teacher does!!!!
Now, what is the legal purpose of ESL/ELD?
To help English Learners overcome the "language barriers" that prevent
English Learners from receiving an "equal educational opportunity and
equal access to the core curriculum."
What is the goal? For ESL/ELD students to
function ON A PAR with all other students who speak English as a primary
language (and who out-perform the ESL/ELD students in core content area
testing in English). The goal is for ESL/ELD students to participate fully
ON A PAR with their English ONLY classmates and to succeed just as easily as
their English ONLY classmates achieve success in core content area classes.
Thus, what is the purpose of ESL/ELD
classes? To prepare ESL/ELD students to SUCCESSFULLY participate in English
ONLY content area core classes just as their English ONLY classmates
successfully participate. The ESL/ELD program should NOT be totally
unrelated to what is going on in the core content area classes, but
rather the ESL/ELD program MUST be fully linked to the DEVELOPMENT of the
ACADEMIC LANGUAGE needed to succeed in core content area classes when the
ESL/ELD students return to class AFTER their ESL/ELD daily classes. THAT
IS WHY the fully certified teacher MUST be in charge of what goes on in the
ESL/ELD class, especially if taught by an aide. so, the answer to your
questions above are:
Does the teacher have to have visual proximity with the "teaching"
NOT necessarily, but the teacher MUST tell
the aide what to do!!!
Should the guiding teacher plan all lessons/activities that the aide does?
They could plan together but the main goal
is SUCCESS in the academic content areas of the core curriculum when
students return to the regular class and are taught by the "regular" teacher
with the appropriate certification, and participate with their English ONLY
Should the teacher meet daily with the instructional aide to plan
NOT necessarily IF they have a good working
relationship. NEW AIDES may need a lot of guidance.
Does the teacher deliver tests and report results/give progress reports if
The teacher is LEGALLY responsible for ALL
tests and reports. The teacher
does NOT need to give the tests personally
but definitely MUST insure the aide knows what to do.
I guess I'm just confused about how much guidance
UNDER THE DIRECT GUIDANCE AND SUPERVISION means. How much is "any" guidance?
What does an ideal, or even just acceptable, amount of guidance look like
when the law is being followed?
If the ELD/ESL
students can fully and on a par participate with the English ONLY students
in the content area core classes, that is the IDEAL / ACCEPTABLE amount of
What does it look like when the law is not being
aide has absolutely NO guidance, supervision, support, and just does as s(he)
pleases in providing ESL/ELD, or simply does homework which the student has
already failed. REMEDIATION is NOT what the law intends.
There's probably a great deal of "gray" area
Honestly, I see no
"gray" areas. The compliance requirements are clear and the test of
meeting legal compliance is "equal educational opportunity and equal access
to the core curriculum" which translates, according to several legal
decisions, into NO EDUCATIONAL GAP for diverse groups of students;
and each specific situation would have to examined
closely, but I'd appreciate any more details you think I might be able to
rely upon in my conversations with district officials.
Hope this helps!!!!
2) As far as the QUALIFIED TEACHER, that would include a CLAD, BCC, or even
the "locally" certified teachers per AB (something or other),
Correct!! (Unfortunately, sometimes some of
the local programs do NOT have any quality controls)
Just so you'll know, I'm just a regular teacher with a CLAD in a "regular"
classroom. For too long, I've had questions about how to help
my district deliver a quality ELD instructional program and to follow
the law. Unfortunately, I believe too many districts in the state are
not concerned enough about the quality of ELD instruction they are
providing ELD students. And, unfortunately, I don't know enough about
the law to "prod" my district into doing the right thing.
Why don't you contact CABE (California
Association for Bilingual Education)? They WILL help you!!!!!
Parents of these ELD do need to make a little noise
about the quality of instruction, but there are a variety of reasons why
they don't or can't.
Fully agree!!! That
is WHY we need teachers like YOU!!!!!
How I proceed from here really depends on your answer to my question (1)
above. I have asked my principal and others in the district
compliance questions in the past, but usually I don't get full or
even understandable answers. THEY claim to be confused about how to legally
comply with the laws and what compliance looks like.
WOW, the LEGAL
entities with full LEGAL responsibility in YOUR SCHOOL and DISTRICT are
"confused" and have NOT tried to get un-confused???????
WOW, if I were a
parent at your school or district I would be up in arms about those LEGALLY
responsible to implement the educational laws in California telling me they
I SOOOO appreciate your quick and helpful response to my email, and I'm
SOOOO glad I found your website! Thank you for being there and being
willing to share your expertise!
For more in-depth information, classroom demonstrations, and
"coaching" of new and/or experienced teachers, Dr. CARMEN SANCHEZ SADEK
- Training VIDEOS on the following topic:
1. Cognitive - Academic Language and Vocabulary
2. Cross Cultural Diversity - Multicultural Strategies
3. Effective Instruction for English Learners (L.E.P. students) Parts 1, 2, 3, 4
4. Promoting Academic Success in Language Minority Students
5. Cognitive - Academic Language and Vocabulary Development
6. Oral Language / Literacy Skills / Higher Order Thinking Skills
7. 50/50 Dual Language Programs: design, planning and implementation
8. The Structure of English / The Structure of Spanish
9. Transition: Introduction to English Reading
- Training programs relating to E.S.L. instruction:
Web Site Programs for Teachers: Numbers 1, 5,
7, 8, and 9.
Web Site Programs for Paraprofessionals:
Web Site Programs for New Teachers:
Enhanced Cultural Sensitivity - The Challenge of Students Diversity
Identifying / Responding to Students' Language Needs
Phonemic Awareness: Teaching English phonics to L.E.P. students
Relationship Between Reading, Writing and Spelling
Improving Reading Performance -- Building Oral Language Skills)
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For information and credentials please click on the link below or
CARMEN SANCHEZ SADEK, Ph.D.
Educational Consultant, Program Evaluator
National Board for Professional Teaching
Standards, Certification (12/2006)
3113 Malcolm Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90034-3406
Phone and Fax: (310) 474-5605