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Santa Maria-Bonita SD |  BP  6141.4  Instruction

Bilingual-Bicultural Education   

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The primary goal of the district's program for English learners is the development of English language proficiency including listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students acquiring English need access to the same body of knowledge, skills and ways of thinking about the world that are available to English-speaking students. Students shall learn English by being taught in English. The district's program for English learners shall ensure the rapid development of English literacy. English learners are expected to succeed in learning the core curriculum in English and are held to the same district established standards and benchmarks. The Governing Board directs that the district shall comply with the requirements and intent of the English Language in Public Schools Initiative in seeking to achieve this goal.

The goal of the district will be that all students who are English learners will be enrolled in a Sheltered English Immersion Program for one year, unless a student has not achieved a reasonable level of English proficiency and the parents/guardians do not object to the extended placement. In this program, the instruction will be in English with the primary language of the student used to clarify and assist the English language instruction or otherwise assist the student, with the goal of promoting the rapid acquisition of the English language.

Parents/guardians may request to waive out of the Sheltered English Immersion program and opt for an alternative program. A determination will be made by the district whether the alternative program requested will meet the English learner's special needs or that the alternative program would better lead to the rapid acquisition of English language skills. This determination is to be made after completing the process of applying for a waiver. Individual school sites where 20 or more students of the same grade level receive a waiver must offer a class of the alternative program requested.

In addition to the Sheltered English Immersion program parents/ guardians shall be informed of their right to select the English Mainstream program. In this program, the instruction will be in English. Parents/guardians shall also be informed that they have the right to place their student in this program immediately, without any waiting period, if this is the instructional placement that they choose.

The other program available as an alternative is the Parental Choice Alternative program. The Board defines Parental Choice Alternative program not as education in a foreign language, but as skills, concepts and proficiencies taught in two languages while students learn English and develop analytical competencies which transcend language.

The district's efforts to identify and assist English learners shall be based on sound educational practice and research which meet the diverse needs of students. The Board recognizes that the recruitment, development and retention of qualified instructors and assistants are essential to the success of these efforts and shall take action, within budgetary constraints, to provide the necessary personnel.

The Superintendent shall maintain procedures which provide for careful identification, assessment and placement of English learners in consultation with the parents/guardians of such students. Parents/guardians will be informed annually of their rights concerning English learner program placement.

An English learner shall be transferred from the district's Sheltered English Immersion program to an English Mainstream program when the student has acquired a reasonable level of English proficiency. This means the student has acquired a "good working knowledge of English" or a "reasonable fluency in English". A "good working knowledge of English" or a "reasonable fluency in English" is defined as the point when the student has acquired a reasonable level of English proficiency as measured by any of the state designated assessments approved by the California Department of Education, or any alternative assessments developed by the district, as approved by the Board.

In addition to utilizing state designated assessments approved by the California Department of Education, or any locally developed assessments of the district as approved by the Board, to measure English language skills, the re-designation process shall include, at a minimum, evaluations by teachers, an assessment of basic skills, and consultation with parents/guardians. (Education Code 52164.6 and Administrative code 4306) Subsequent monitoring and support of re-designated students shall be a priority of the district. All English learners shall receive an annual language and skills assessment. (Education Code 52171.6)

The district shall maintain an English Learner Master Plan which shall include the specified procedures and necessary forms required to implement the above policy and related administrative regulations.

All administrators, certificated employees, and instructional staff shall comply with the requirements of this Board policy, its implementing administrative regulations, and the requirements of the Title 5, California Code of Regulations, Division 1, Chapter 11, English Language Learner Education Subchapter 4.

Legal Reference:


44253.5; 44253.6 Certification for

bilingual-bicultural competence

52000 et seq. Improvement of elementary and secondary education (esp. 52015(b))

52060-52065 Native American Indian education program

52100-52114 Bilingual Education Act of 1972

52150-52151 Bilingual teacher corps program

52160-52179 Bilingual-Bicultural Act of 1976

54000 et seq. Programs for disadvantaged children


4300 et seq. Bilingual education programs

4310 et seq. Bilingual-bicultural education programs


adopted: September 9, 1998 Santa Maria, California

revised: April 26, 2000