K–12 English LearnersHello!We're here to help your child learn English and transition into our school and into our town.The New Canaan Public School English Learners (EL) Program is available to students enrolled in grades K-12. Our mission is to facilitate the acquisition of communicative and academic English, academic content and cultural knowledge to enable English Learners (ELs) to succeed in general education classes and in U.S. communities as quickly as possible.
Due to the relatively small number of students enrolled in the district, New Canaan is considered a “low-incidence” school district. During the 2017-2018 school year there are 55 Kindergarten though 12th grade students enrolled in the New Canaan Public Schools EL program. Each student is unique in their degree of English Language proficiency.Our PurposeEnglish Language proficiency helps your child succeed in school.
The New Canaan Public Schools provides EL students with:
Our BeliefsEnglish Language proficiency helps your child feel more comfortable as a member of their community.
- Comprehensive English Language instruction in all language skills: reading, writing, listening and speaking, and critical thinking.
- Content area instruction that is academically challenging and tailored to the student’s linguistic proficiency, educational background and academic needs.
- Ongoing professional learning is provided for all staff members to help them facilitate the academic growth of linguistically and culturally diverse students.
Our CurriculumIn New Canaan our EL students are educated with the same curriculum as their grade level peers.However, with the Response to Intervention Framework, curriculum and instruction are differentiated to meet the needs of each student. Teachers use the Common Core Standards to support their very focused instruction. Sheltered English techniques and strategies in order to make the content comprehensible for ELs. EL students' goals are expectations framed within their language proficiency level.K–12 English Learner (EL) Entrance/Exit Policy
- New Canaan Public Schools recognizes diversity as a resource to our community and celebrates it as an asset.
- Language is functional and it is best acquired through meaningful use and interaction.
- Language learning is culture-based, and therefore it follows that the teaching of culture must include the values, norms, and beliefs appropriate to the language.
- Language learning is an on-going process. It is affected by the background of each student and progresses at varying rates.
- Language processes (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) develop interdependently. Students need learning environments that provide opportunities to practice and develop these skills.
1. Home language survey
When a family registers their child in the New Canaan Public School District they are asked three questions on their registration form:
1. What is the language the student first accquired?
2. What is the language most often spoken by the student?
3. What is the primary language used in the home, regardless of the language spoken by the student?
If the answer to any TWO or more of those three questions is a language other than English, the English Learners Department is contacted.
2. The EL Department administers a placement test to evaluate student language proficiency.
- And examines any prior academic experience in the United States
- Once a child has qualified for English Language Services, families are contacted. According to the State of Connecticut, a family has the right to decline English Language support.
Each EL Student is assessed annually, in the new year with the LAS LINKS test. This assessment will continue until the student has met both academic and language criteria necessary for exit. The criteria are as follows:
- English Mastery Standard
- Overall Level 4 or 5 and Reading Score 4 or higher and Writing Score 4 or higher