Creating New Possibilities for Multilingual Learners in the Next ESEA Authorization
How did ESSA create new possibilities for English learners and the educators and leaders who serve them to reach their potential? How can the next reauthorization of ESEA create even more possibilities? This session will feature a panel discussion among federal and state policymakers and researchers about successes under ESSA, what we’ve learned, and how to build on that progress in the next ESEA reauthorization. Panelists will share research findings, gaps, and policy considerations related to key topics such as access and expansion of multilingual programs, the inclusion of EL students in state and local accountability, policies for exiting from EL status, and the evolution of the English learner label itself. Through engagement with one another and the audience, panelists will offer ideas about what state and district leaders can do now to realize ESSA’s policy goals for EL students, as well as how leaders can advocate for EL students and educators in the law’s next iteration.
Dr. Melissa Castillo has over 28 years of experience in education. She previously served as the Associate Superintendent of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion for the Arizona Department of Education, responsible for advancing educational opportunities and outcomes for diverse student populations. As a senior advisor to Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, Dr. Castillo represents the Department's priorities and vision around the expansion of multilingualism and multilingual programs for all students.
Molly Faulkner-Bond is a Senior Research Associate at WestEd, where her work focuses on English learners, policy, and assessment. Dr. Faulkner-Bond works regularly with state and federal partners as a technical advisor, research partner, and thought partner to support the design and implementation of policies and systems to support diverse students and their teachers.
25 years as a CA educator has offered various vantage points through which I can examine and contribute to positive experiences and outcomes of MLLs. From overcoming English only initiatives to elevating multilingual programs/policies, I’ve contributed to the field as a practitioner, instructional coach, county PL lead, advocate, and SEA director.
Dr. Karen D. Thompson is an Associate Professor in the College of Education at Oregon State University and serves as Chair for the ESOL/Dual Language program. She works closely with state leaders in Oregon and beyond to help them collect, analyze, and act on English learner data to improve systems and services.