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Appendix 1

Declaration of Rights for Parents of English Language Learners under No Child Left Behind

Under No Child Left Behind, parents of English language learners can expect:

  1. To have your child receive a quality education and be taught by a highly qualified teacher.
    President Bush and Secretary of Education Rod Paige believe that the key to a quality education is a highly qualified teacher. The new education act requires that all teachers of the core academic subjects be highly qualified by the end of the 2005-2006 school year, including teachers of English language learners.
  2. To have your child learn English and other subjects such as reading and other language arts and mathematics at the same academic level as all other students.
    Schools must provide English language learners the same educational opportunities to meet the same high academic standards as their peers. The No Child Left Behind Act does not require schools to use a particular method for teaching English language acquisition nor does it prohibit a child from learning another language.
  3. To know if your child has been identified and recommended for placement in an English language acquisition program, and to accept or refuse such placement.
    A parent or guardian must be notified when his or her child is identified and recommended for placement in a program for English language instruction. Notification must include the reason for placement, the method of instruction and what is required for the child to exit the program, and it must be in a language or manner that the parents understand.
  4. To choose a different English language acquisition program for your child, if one is available.
    Parents may choose from among the various English language acquisition instructional programs in the school, if more than one is available. If the child is placed in a program that is not meeting his or her educational needs, the parent may have the child transferred to another available program in the district.
  5. To transfer your child to another school if his or her school is identified as “in need of improvement.”
    Once a school has been identified as “in need of improvement,” the public school choice provisions of the law provide parents with children in these schools the option of transferring them to another public school in the district, including a nearby charter school, if one is available, and the district will pay for or provide transportation.
  6. To apply for supplemental services, such as tutoring, for your child if his or her school is identified as “in need of improvement” for two years.
    A supplemental service is extra educational help provided to students, such as tutoring and other afterschool services. Students from low-income families who are enrolled in schools that are “in need of improvement” for two years are eligible to receive these services.
  7. To have your child tested annually to assess his or her progress in English language acquisition.
    Testing is used to assess how students are performing and what they have learned. The No Child Left Behind Act requires yearly assessment for English language proficiency (K-12). Schools must provide student assessment reports to parents that will, among other things, let them know how well their child is learning English.
  8. To receive information regarding your child’s performance on academic tests.
    Under No Child Left Behind all children in grades 3-8 will be tested yearly, and those in grades 9-12 will be tested at least once in math and reading-language arts. No Child Left Behind requires that parents be notified of their child’s academic progress in these subjects in a language or manner that they understand.
  9. To have your child taught with programs that are scientifically proven to work.
    English language learners can become fully proficient in English and master challenging content when enrolled in high-quality programs with a highly qualified teacher. No Child Left Behind requires that programs for English language learners funded under the act use curriculum and instructional methods that reflect scientifically based research.
  10. To have the opportunity for your child to reach his or her greatest academic potential.
    For the first time in the history of public education, there is a federal law that specifically addresses the educational achievement gap between minority children and their peers by implementing strong accountability measures. A quality K-12 education will assist every child who aspires to a college education so that he or she can be academically prepared to enter an institution of higher learning upon

No Child Left Behind--a new era in public education.
Office of English Language Acquisition—January 2004
(January 2004)

Resource Guide for Working with ESL Students
Who are English Language Learners? What does legislation say about educating and assessing ELLs? The Politics of Language What patterns does English language development typically follow? What are common program models for ESL education? What does the ESL specialist need from me? How can I support ELLs in my classroom? Conclusion Resources Appendix 1: Declaration of Rights for Parents of English Language Learners under No Child Left Behind Appendix 2: Legislation of the 108th Congress concerning Foreign Languages and International Education Appendix 3: Six Levels of Minority Language Policy