Serving ELL Students and Families

About This Guide

For many educators, helping children learn English is a joy and a privilege. But classroom educators may not always know their administration’s approach to serving English language learners. Similarly, school leaders may not know how educators are approaching ELL instruction in the classroom. Reviewing a few key practices as a staff can help move the entire school toward a comprehensive and culturally responsive approach to serving English language learners and their families. This guide can help get the process started.

The recommendations in this guide were largely adapted from Critical Practices for Anti-bias Education, a professional development publication from Learning for Justice. The guide also leans heavily on tasks and strategies found on this site and on material developed by our legal colleagues at the Southern Poverty Law Center.

In addition to best practices that can be applied throughout the school building, the guide includes at least one Teacher Leadership Spotlight in every section. These spotlights draw attention to ways in which teachers can take action outside the classroom to ensure ELL students and their families enjoy welcoming, equitable experiences at school.


Appendix A: Suggested Anti-bias Strategies for Use With ELL Students
Appendix B: Monitoring the Language Program Graphic Organizer
Appendix C: Planning for District-wide Language Access Services




Illustration of person holding and looking at laptop.

New Virtual Workshops Are Available Now!

Registrations are now open for our 90-minute virtual open enrollment workshops. Explore the schedule, and register today—the first workshop begins October 16th and space is limited!

Sign Up!