ELL News Headlines

Throughout the week, Colorín Colorado gathers news headlines related to English language learners from around the country. The ELL Headlines are posted Monday through Friday and are available for free!

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25 Kid and YA Books That Lift Up Immigrant Voices

These titles shine a spotlight on immigrant experiences and present autobiographical or fictional stories based on childhood memories or drawn from work with immigrant children. A wordless graphic novel, a detailed foldout codex, a few bilingual books, and an easy-to-read photo-illustrated informational text augment this selection of picture books, novels, and memoirs, loosely divided into grade level categories. The websites provided complement these books with information on immigrants and refugees in the U.S., and are useful for educators and older students alike.

UTSA Explores Latino Children's Literature at March 23-25 Conference

Authors, scholars, librarians, educators and artists are among the many who are converging upon San Antonio this week to discuss the latest and best in Latino children's and young adult literature. The eighth National Latino Children's Literature Conference, "Connecting Cultures & Celebrating Cuentos," is scheduled on Thursday, March 23 through Saturday, March 25 at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Downtown Campus.

Inclusive Wellness Center Is an Oasis for a Neighborhood Left Behind

In the heart of one of Denver's poorest neighborhoods, parents hoped for a new preschool. Instead they got much more. The Dahlia Campus for Health and Well-being is a preschool, urban farm, dental office and mental health care center, all in one. William Brangham visits to see how it’s supporting the community.

New York City Will Not Allow Immigration Agents in Schools Without Warrants

New York City, home to the nation's largest public school system, announced several measures this week aimed at protecting immigrant students and families. Among them: the city will not allow federal immigration agents into schools without signed warrants, and it will host 100 forums across the city on immigrant rights, fraud prevention, and city services available to immigrant families. The department of education, which does not collect information on students' immigration status, also will not divulge student information to immigration agents unless required by law, the city said. 

New York City's English Learners Often Struggle to Graduate, But Here’s How Some Schools Buck That Trend

About 13 percent of New York City’s 1.1 million students are considered English learners — a group of students that can be among the toughest to serve. Last year, while the dropout rate for the city overall declined, the dropout rate among English learners jumped to 27 percent — an increase of more than 5 percentage points from the year before. But a handful of other schools across the city manage to buck that trend, providing valuable lessons for how to better serve these students.

Librarians Providing Safe Havens as Deportation Fears Loom

Schools are frequently called upon to be safe havens. Caring and determined faculty, staff, and administrators do everything in their power to keep students safe, happy, and healthy while they are in school, and to send them out into the world equipped to meet its many challenges. This is why the recent executive orders pertaining to immigration, and the subsequent expanding of deportation regulations, have hit school communities particularly hard. Learn more about some librarians working to make their librarians an even more welcoming space for students around the country.

Unanimous Supreme Court Expands Scope of Special Education Rights

The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a major decision expanding the scope of students' special education rights, ruling unanimously that schools must do more than provide a "merely more than de minimis" education program to a student with a disability.

Fifty Education Groups Tell Congress: Reject the GOP Health Care Bill

Some fifty education groups are urging lawmakers to vote against the American Health Care Act, better known as the GOP alternative to the Affordable Care Act. The reason? The bill, which is being pushed by both President Donald Trump and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., the speaker of the House, would make changes to the way that Medicaid is funded.  Schools receive about $4 billion a year from the program, or more than a quarter of what they current get in Title I money for disadvantaged students. That makes Medicaid the third largest federal program for K-12 schools. The dollars are generally used to help cover the cost of providing services to Medicaid eligible students in special education. That can mean anything from wheelchairs to speech therapy. Districts will need to make up for the cuts to Medicaid by either raising taxes, cutting services for general education students, or both, the groups who signed the letter contend. What's more, school districts may be forced to cut mental health services and lay-off employees (including school nurses), the groups write.

Teaching Language With Culture In California

Elementary school teacher Ron Morris of Riverside, California goes a step beyond to understand his students' backgrounds. It's one way Morris incorporates the culture of his students in the classroom.

School Grant Helps Refugee Families Integrate in Washington State

A grant program is helping refugee students travel the long emotional distance from their homes to integrate into schools and their communities in the United States. The Office of Refugee Resettlement distributes Refugee School Impact Grants to 38 states, including Washington, and helps students who recently have arrived in the country get on their feet.