English Language Development Services
BVSD recognizes students' languages as an asset and strives to support the maintenance of them as students develop their English through our English Language Development (ELD) programming.
Elementary English Language Development (ELD) services are provided via a co-teaching model. Co-teaching is when a general education teacher and an ELD teacher collaborate to plan and implement daily lessons in a core content area. The general education teacher uses their content expertise and the ELD teacher uses their language expertise to plan intentional lessons that support students in developing language while accessing grade level standards.
The following are some of the many benefits of co-teaching:
It is an inclusive approach and students are not pulled out of the classroom. (Newcomers also remain in the classroom, though they may be pulled out for a short amount of time to receive some direct instruction in their first few weeks of school.)
Students have access to grade level standards and do not miss any content instruction
Students have peer language models
Teachers collaborate and co-plan
Language supports and strategies are incorporated into ongoing general education instruction
All teachers share responsibility for all students
Villa, Thousand, and Nevin (2013) share some exemplars and non-exemplars of co-teaching:
What Co-teaching IS
What Co-teaching is NOT
Two or more people sharing responsibility for teaching the students assigned to a classroom.
Distribution of responsibility for planning, instruction, and evaluation
An innovative and creative way to help all students learn in an inclusive environment.
One person teachers while the other prepares instructional materials, makes copies, or grades assignments.
One person teaching and the other person sitting by and watching.
One teacher tutoring a couple students while classroom instruction occurs.
Co-teaching as a Collaborative Partnership
Co-teaching involves a collaborative partnership between the classroom teacher and ELD teacher to support the academic and language development of all students assigned to a classroom. The responsibility of planning, instruction, and evaluation for the classroom of students during the selected core content area is shared between both teachers (Villa, Thousand, & Nevin, 2013). By working together, these teachers can create a more inclusive and supportive learning environment that meets the needs of all students.
The following visual illustrates Honigsfeld and Dove’s Collaborative Teaching Cycle (2019):
When paired for co-teaching, the classroom teacher and ELD teacher plan together, each bringing their individual expertise around content and language to plan lessons with language support so that all students can access grade level standards. While both teachers work with all students, they each have specific roles and responsibilities that they bring to the collaboration.
BVSD’s Theory of Action for Co-teaching
The theory of action for co-teaching in BVSD is as follows:
IF we provide the time & opportunity for teachers to co-plan and co-teach,
THEN language acquisition will occur in context and be anchored in prior knowledge and grade level content.
THEREFORE, EBs will demonstrate growth and achievement in language acquisition and grade level content, and students can be ready to be redesignated as FEP learners within three years.
When classroom teachers and ELD teachers work together in the same classroom to plan, instruct, and assess, all students benefit.
Co-teaching Implementation Rollout 2022-2025
BVSD has begun rolling out co-teaching as a service model at the elementary level by cohort. For each cohort of schools in their first year, principals and their teams participate in a year of learning about co-teaching. In the second year, schools begin co-teaching in their buildings. The structure of co-teaching in each building and the pace of implementation varies slightly depending on each school’s context and needs, but all BVSD elementary schools that have ELD teachers are transitioning to co-teaching as their ELD program.
Itinerant ELD teachers support several elementary schools with lower numbers of EBs. They work directly with students who need services, and they support general education teachers in serving those students. Elementary schools with itinerant ELD teachers work with school principals and teachers to provide support to students in a manner that makes the most sense, given local school context and student need.
BVSD has 3 Dual Language (DL) elementary schools: Columbine Elementary, Escuela Bilingüe Pioneer, and University Hill Elementary. All three schools are Spanish/English two-way programs and include a balance of students who speak Spanish at home and those who speak English, or sometimes another language, at home.
All students at Escuela Bilingüe Pioneer and University Hill Elementary are enrolled in the DL program. Columbine Elementary has a DL strand as well as an English-only strand. For students designated as NEP and LEP, DL programs meet their ELD program requirements, as all of their English instruction is taught by a teacher with an endorsement in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education (CLDE) and they include language development strategies and support throughout the day. For more information on DL programming, see the BVSD Dual Language Programming Page.
With the exception of Southern Hills, Platt, and Nederland, who are each supported by itinerant ELD teachers as needed, every school with middle level grades, as of fall 2023, is moving towards either a co-teaching model, an ELD class model, or a combination of both co-teaching and an ELD class to support EBs. Below is a brief explanation of each of these three options, as well as what programming looks like for EB students in our DL strands.
Beginning in the 2023-2024 school year, middle school principals have the choice to engage in a learning year about the model options, or try one or both model options. Beginning in the 2024-2025 school year, all middle schools will be implementing a model option that meets the needs of their individual school contexts.
In alignment with elementary schools, co-teaching at the secondary level is when a general education teacher and an ELD teacher work together to plan and implement daily lessons in a core content area. The general education teacher brings the content lens while the ELD teacher brings the language focus.
In the ELD class(es) model, EBs are assigned to a class period designated as ELD or ESL that is taught by an ELD teacher. Best practice is to align ELD class instruction with core class content. Some schools may only have a separate class for Newcomers, while others might also have additional ELD class levels for students at various language proficiencies.
Some schools may wish to offer both co-taught classes and stand alone ELD classes. WIth this combination, students may be assigned either or both classes based on their individual ELD data (i.e. Newcomer students or those at lower levels of English proficiency might be placed in an ELD or Newcomer class while students at higher levels of language proficiency might only be in a co-taught class). In this case, students may take a co-taught class as well as a separate ELD class depending on their needs.
After 5th grade, students have the opportunity to continue their Dual Language (DL) education in one of three middle schools: Angevine Middle School, Casey Middle School, and Manhattan Middle School of Arts and Academics, each of which have a DL strand. At each middle school, students can take Spanish language arts, a Spanish content class, and at least one Spanish elective in 6th - 8th grade. EBs in these programs receive ELD services via an endorsed teacher in a content area class, a co-taught class, or both. For more information on DL programming, see the BVSD Dual Language Programming page.
- Newcomer Programming
- English Language Development Classes
- Fluent English Proficient (FEP) Monitoring
- Alternative Pathways
Students in their first year in the United States and new to English (designated NEP) are offered attendance in BVSD’s Newcomer Program. Newcomer programming lasts one year and is offered at Boulder High School and Centaurus High School. Newcomers who have a home school other than BHS and CHS have the option to attend either BHS or CHS depending on where they live. Transportation to and from school will be provided from their home school. Attendance in the Newcomer Program is optional, as families may choose to send their student to their home high school.
In the Newcomer Program, students are provided more time in ELD classes designed for Newcomers while simultaneously working to achieve credits for graduation. Students are expected to participate in the program for one year. In their second year, students who continue to be in the earlier stages of English language development may draw upon a combination of programming that specifically meets their needs.
Newcomer schedules differ from typical high school schedules as follows:
1) Newcomer programming uses a semester system, with eight classes/day.
2) In the first semester:
Students are initially placed in 3 ELD classes, 2 direct language instruction classes, and 1 content language instruction class.
Then they are scheduled into 2 content classes, typically Math and Spanish or Math and Science, depending on their first language.
Finally, they are scheduled into 2 elective classes.
3) In the second semester:
Students can be placed in 2 ELD classes and 3 content classes that are either co-taught or the content area teachers works in collaboration with the ELD teacher to plan for appropriate supports and scaffolds.
High school students in the intermediate stages of language development (designated LEP) are enrolled in English language arts courses taught by teachers with a CLDE endorsement. These courses were created so students could take English language arts while also ensuring they receive language development support. In addition to these language arts courses specific to their needs, students are enrolled in math, science, social studies, and elective courses with their English speaking peers. At times, some of these content courses might have push in support from a CLDE endorsed teacher to ensure that students have access to and engagement in grade level coursework.
Students who have achieved levels of English proficiency that resulted in their redesignation are monitored for 2 additional years. Since these students are continuing to refine their command of the academic language needed to be successful in school, content teachers provide language scaffolds and supports as needed to ensure all students can access and engage in the grade level curriculum. When students struggle, ELD teachers who monitor them consult with the content teachers.They use their language expertise to collaborate with the content teacher and help determine further supports and scaffolds that will ensure students are successfully progressing towards academic success and high school graduation.
When older immigrant students arrive in BVSD with interrupted schooling or minimal credits from their home country and are near graduation age, BVSD partners with city, county, and community resources and non-profit organizations that can support students to pursue pathways to English proficiency and high school equivalency if they do not have enough time to be supported to a pathway to graduation. CLDE staff are available to support school administrators, teachers, and counselors to explore options that fit individual students’ circumstances to help maximize their inclusion in the high school community while accessing resources for a pathway to success beyond high school.