Bilingual / ESL Information
GPISD’s Bilingual/ESL Programs team supports English language learners through a variety of instructional models at both the elementary and secondary levels. The department’s goal is to provide all students with the skills they need in order to become fluent speakers, readers, and writers of English while valuing their linguistic, academic, and cultural experiences as members of a diverse community.
Dual Language Model
For elementary students in GPISD, Bilingual/ESL Programs provides a dual language program whose goal is bilingualism, biliteracy, and biculturalism. In this program, we provide one and two-way models, according to the needs of our campuses. In each of the models, the subjects contained in the curriculum are divided between the two languages of instruction, which are Spanish and English. No matter the language of instruction, the focus of the program is to develop knowledge of the necessary content in a way that can be transferred. The uniqueness of these models lies not in the way the subjects are taught, but in the students who compose the classes.
In a one-way classroom, all the students are from a non-English-speaking background. They are consistently provided with opportunities to acquire English. Beginning students learn to read and write in their native language, and these skills are later transferable to English. The student’s native language is not subtracted as English develops. It continues to be developed, with the end result being that students who complete the program will be proficient readers, writers, and speakers of both languages.
In the two-way model, each class is composed of both native English speakers and speakers of other languages. Roughly speaking, both groups are equally represented. For both groups, reading and writing instruction is first presented in the native language, whether that be English or Spanish. As with the one-way model, the subjects in the curriculum are purposefully divided between the two languages. This arrangement allows students to transfer their knowledge of the subjects from one language to the other. The ultimate goal is the same as for the one-way model: proficiency in reading, writing, and speaking two languages.
English as a Second Language Model
All campuses offer English as a Second Language to students who speak a language other than English. Certified ESL teachers provide sheltered instruction to ensure comprehension of the content as well as developing English language proficiencies. Our district goal is to provide programs which have educational, cognitive, economic and socio-cultural benefits for our students as individuals as well as members of our community. Secondary students in our English as a Second Language (ESL) program benefit from instruction that is geared toward the needs of second-language learners. Our methodology focuses on delivering rigorous instruction in all the content areas through sheltered instruction that promotes language acquisition while developing the content knowledge base. In addition, educators implement the English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS) in all content areas in order to facilitate increased English proficiency while building academic language. Our International Newcomer Center serves students
6th-8th grades and is housed at Fannin Middle School. The center provides intensive instruction in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in English. This highly effective transitional program focuses on rapid language development by researched, evidence-based sheltered instruction.Assist campus administrators and classroom educators in implementing the ELPS and TEKS for Limited English Proficient students:
- Support teacher education through District professional development for sheltered instruction and other secondary ESL instructional needs
- Support and advocate structure, uniformity and implementation of the articulated secondary ESL/sheltered instruction program with specific knowledge of Newcomer students Measure and evaluate the use of ESL researched, evidence-based practices and teaching strategies
- Maintain and inform stakeholders on current knowledge of secondary ESL program (e.g., laws; changes and trends) Use data to assist teachers and administrators in creating language goals for their students
- Design and implement effective summer language program for English Language Learners
- Review and select ESL secondary materials appropriate for sheltered instruction, ESL, and the Newcomer Program in collaboration with the specific content area facilitators.