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ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Microcredentials prepare all teachers to work with English learners

By Laureen Avery
August 2019
Vol. 40 No. 4
Today, one of every 10 students is an English learner. That means most classroom teachers are or will be working with English learner students. However, the majority of those teachers will tell you they are underprepared and lack confidence in their ability to work with these students or connect with them and their families. Staff, coaches, and partners at the ExcEL Leadership Academy in Connecticut recognized the need for a better approach to professional learning that would prepare all teachers to work with English learners. This approach melds current knowledge of effective adult learning and effective instruction for English learners geared toward mainstream teachers.  By using a microcredential approach, in which teachers progress at their own rate and demonstrate their mastery of best practices, ExcEL

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Authors

Laureen Avery

Laureen Avery (avery@gseis.ucla.edu) is the Northeast region director at UCLA Center X and is based in Connecticut.

For more information on the Effective Educator of English Learners designation, visit www.excelleadershipacademy.org/pages/micro-credential.

References

Casey, K. (2018). Moving toward mastery: Growing, developing and sustaining educators for competency-based education. Vienna, VA: iNACOL.

Darling-Hammond, L., Hyler, M.E., Gardner, M. (2017). Effective teacher professional development. Palo Alto, CA: Learning Policy Institute.

Learning Forward. (2011). Standards for Professional Learning. Oxford, OH: Author.

NCES. (2018). English learners in public schools. The Condition of Education 2018. Available at https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator_cgf.asp.

Spillane, J., Shirrell, M., & Adhikari, S. (2018). Constructing ‘experts’ among peers: Educational infrastructure, test data, and teachers’ interactions about teaching. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 40, 586-612.

Wixom, M.A. (2015). ECS and national experts examine: State-level English language learner policies. Denver, CO: Education Commission of the States.


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