Legal Foundation for ESL Programs

                   The education of students who are English language learners is the responsibility of every school district/charter school in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (BEC). Title III of the No Child Left Behind Act 2002 ensures that English Language Learners develop English proficiency and meet the same academic content and academic achievement standards that other children are expected to meet.

                      Title 22, Chapter 4, Section 4.26 of the Curriculum Regulations requires that the school district and charter schools provide a program for every student who is limited English proficient (LEP) or an English language learner (ELL). The regulation states the following:

                   "Every school district shall provide a program for each student whose dominantlanguage is not English for the purpose of facilitating the student's achievement of English proficiency and the academic standards under §4.12 (relating to academic standards). Programs under this section shall include instruction in English as a second language."

                   In accordance with this legislation, the Cambria Heights School District provides English language learners with a planned instructional program appropriate to the student's developmental and instructional levelto facilitate the acquisition of English as an additional language.

    PDE defined criteria for exiting ELL

    Exiting the ELL program may only be accomplished by meeting the exit criteria as defined by the state department of education. Students must meet both criteria 1 & 2 as well as one of the two additional criteria. 

    Required Exit Criteria:
    1.        Score of BASIC on the annual Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA).
    ·         For students transferring from other states, out-of-state academic achievement assessment results may be considered when the academic proficiency level is comparable to BASIC on the PSSA.
    ·         For students that are in a grade that is not assessed with the PSSA, Local Education Agencies (LEA) must use each of the remaining criteria listed below to exit students.
    2.        Scores of 5.0 on a Tier C ACCESS for ELLs assessment (see Items A and B below for cutoff score flexibility)
    A.       Following the scoring criteria in the table below, the W-APT may be administered between April and June to students who scored below the minimum cutoff for program exit on the January administration of the ACCESS in order to demonstrate sufficient progress to justify exit.
    NOTE: The W-APT may ONLY be administered to a student once in any school year.
                                    Grade Level                        ACCESS Score                     Required W-APT Scores*
                                    1-5                                          4.6-4.9                                  5.0 in each domain
                                    6-8                                           4.7-4.9                                 5.0 in each domain
                                    9-12                                       4.8-4.9                                  5.0 in each domain
    * A student must score 5.0 in each domain (listening, speaking, reading and writing). A composite proficiency score will not be used. 
    B.       A score of PROFICIENT on the reading PSSA can be used along with all other required criteria outlined in this policy to justify exit for students who achieve a composite proficiency score of 4.5 to 4.9 on the January administration of the ACCESS. In this case, W-APT scores are not necessary to demonstrate progress from the time of ACCESS administration to the end of the school year.
    Additional Exit Criteria: Students must meet one of the two criteria listed below as well as both criteria listed above.
    1.        Final grades of C or better in core subject areas (Mathematics, Language Arts, Science and Social Studies).
    2.       Scores on district-wide assessments that are comparable to the BASIC performance level on the PSSA.
    Students who are exited from the district’s ELL program are monitored for two years.  During this time, the ELL teacher collects data through observations, grades, and performance on statewide assessments.  If at any time the data indicates the student is at risk of academic failure due to a language proficiency deficit, modifications or adaptations may be made including reenrollment in the ELL program.

    Click here to access the ESL Data Collection Form