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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Texas Illegally Excluded Thousands from Special Education, Federal Officials Say

For years, Texas education officials illegally led schools across the state to deny therapy, tutoring and counseling to tens of thousands of children with disabilities, the federal government said Thursday. In a letter to the Texas Education Agency, which oversees education in the state, regulators from the federal Department of Education said the state agency’s decision to set a "target" for the maximum percentage of students who should receive special education services had violated federal laws requiring schools to serve all students with disabilities.

As Congress Debates Immigration, DREAMers Are In Limbo Along With Their Families

Christian Olvera is 26 years old, and looks even younger, with curly black hair and a baby face. But he's taken on a lot of responsibility. On paper, Olvera owns the family business. Even the house where he lives with his family, on a leafy street in Dalton, Georgia, is in his name. "People ask me, do you still live with your parents?," Olvera joked. "I'll say no, my parents live with me."

Winners of 2018 American Indian Library Association's Youth Literature Award

Every two years, the American Indian Library Association's Youth Literature Award committee selects books to receive its awards in three categories: Picture Book, Middle Grade Book, and Young Adult Book. From books published in 2016 and 2017, these are the winners – all of which were published by small presses.

Being an English-Language Learner Is Hard. Here Are 5 Ways Teachers Can Make It Easier

Award-winning teacher Justin Minkel writes, "There are plenty of hard things about school for all kids. Too many tests, too much sitting, too little recess. But for English learners, there is an added layer of difficulty. The constant effort to understand and make yourself understood can be exhausting. All 25 of my students speak either Spanish or Marshallese at home. Here are five ways I've found to make school a little easier for them."

Penguin Young Readers Announces Imprint for Diverse Books

Penguin Young Readers has announced the launch of a new imprint, called Kokila, that will focus on diverse books for children and young adults. According to Penguin, the imprint's mission is to "add depth and nuance to the way children and young adults see the world and their place in it."

With DACA in Limbo, Teachers Protected by the Program Gird for the Worst

Karen Reyes spends her days teaching a group of deaf toddlers at Lucy Read Pre-Kindergarten School in Austin, Tex., how to understand a world they cannot hear. For the first time in her four-year teaching career, Ms. Reyes, 29, is at a loss. One of nearly 9,000 educators protected under the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, Ms. Reyes has struggled to explain to her students, through sign language and pictures, the uncertainty of her future.

What the Screen Time Experts Do with Their Own Kids

Parents today struggle to set screen time guidelines. One big reason is a lack of role models. Grandma doesn't have any tried-and-true sayings about iPad time. This stuff is just too new. But many experts on kids and media are also parents themselves. So when I was interviewing dozens of them for my book The Art of Screen Time, I asked them how they made screen time rules at home. None of them held themselves up as paragons, but it was interesting to see how the priorities they focused on in their own research corresponded with the priorities they set at home.

Dallas ISD Developing Plan to Help 'Our Little Ones' If ICE Takes Their Parents

Dallas ISD is developing a plan to help students if their parents or guardians are swept up in raids by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents. Superintendent Michael Hinojosa talked briefly about those emerging plans during a Thursday presentation unveiling a new DISD website — disd.org/daca — for undocumented students and families and those in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

OPINION: This High-Poverty District Learned to Think Differently About Teaching and Learning

St. Mary Parish knew change was needed. By the mid-2000s, the state of Louisiana had placed several of its schools in “academic assistance,” a designation for schools that fail to improve sufficiently. Some had remained there for nearly 10 years. Meanwhile, the rural district’s test scores lagged behind the state average. By 2016, the high-poverty school district had turned around. The key to St. Mary’s success was to place students at the forefront of all decision-making. Often that involved thinking differently about how, when and where teaching and learning actually occur.