Alaska: ELL Resources

As of the 2012-13 school year, Alaska's schools were home to more than 16,000 English language learners (ELLs). Currently, the most common five languages spoken by ELLs in Alaska are Yupik, Spanish, Inupiaq, Filipino, and Hmong. (Migration Policy Institute, 2015).

Alaska is a member of WIDA (World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment), joining in 2011. WIDA is a consortium of states dedicated to the design and implementation of high standards and equitable educational opportunities for English language learners.

State ELL Resources

State Agency: Alaska Department of Education & Early Development

ELL Website: English Language Learner and Title III Resources

ELL Identification

Guidance: Guidance for LEP Student Identification and Assessment (PDF)

Home Language Survey: Required for all newly enrolling students. The Home Language Survey must contain, at a minimum, a version of the following questions:

Placement Exam: WIDA-ACCESS Placement Test (W-APT)

ELL Instruction

Each school is expected to use a program that is known to be sound and proven to be effective for its identified ELs as measured by Alaska's state assessments. The state does not provide any restrictions as to the type of programming that may be implemented.

ELP Standards & Assessment

Guidelines about assessment, accommodations, and ELL resources can be found on the state's ELP Assessment Website

ELP Standards: WIDA English Language Proficiency Standards

ELP Assessment: WIDA-ACCESS for ELLs

Accommodations: Testing Accommodations Manual for Limited English Proficient Students

Statewide Standards-Based Assessment

Assessment: Alaska Student Assessments

ELL Accommodations: Participation Guidelines for Alaska Students in State Academic Assessments: LEP Students and Students with Disabilities (PDF)

Additional Information

Title III Information

*Districts receiving Title III monies must submit a plan to their state each year about the programming that they are providing for English learners. These Plans of Service detail the type of programming that is to be provided and as well as the means by which each LEA will achieve its goals.

WIDA: Alaska Contact Information

Common Core State Standards: Yes


Statewide Organizations

Alaska Association of Bilingual Education

AKABE supports bilingual and ESL programs at both the K-12 and adult levels and advocates for parent involvement in the education of children both at home and at school.

Alaska Public Employees Association

Since 1980, APEA and AFT individually and collectively have been working with white collar employees to assist them in exercising their right to bargain.

Alaska State Parent Information Resource Centers

The Alaska Parent Information and Resource Center (AKPIRC) connects families and schools throughout Alaska to enhance the academic achievement of all students.


NEA-Alaska is a National Education Association State Affiliate that regularly lobbies legislators for the resources schools need, campaigns for higher professional standards for the teaching profession, and files legal actions to protect academic freedom and the rights of school employees.



Office of English Language Acquisition, Language Enhancement, and Academic Achievement for Limited English Proficient Students. Alaska Rate of EL Growth (1997/98-2007/08). Compiled July 2010 and retrieved from

Ruiz Soto, Ariel G., Sarah Hooker, and Jeanne Batalova. 2015. States and Districts with the Highest Number and Share of English Language Learners. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute.

Ruiz Soto, Ariel G., Sarah Hooker, and Jeanne Batalova. 2015. Top Languages Spoken by English Language Learners Nationally and by State. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute.