STATEMENT OF ADVOCACY: Call for the Georgia Professional Standards Commission to Require ESOL Preparation Courses for all Georgia Certified Teachers
GATESOL, LCF Georgia, GALAS, and GALEO join together to urge the Georgia Professional Standards Commission to acknowledge that all K-12 teacher preparation programs should require ESOL courses, including cultural and linguistic knowledge and methods that reﬂect current research and best practices in teaching multilingual learners.
- The likelihood that graduates accepting teaching jobs in Georgia will teach multilingual learners is high. Georgia enrollment in ESOL grew by 61 percent from FY 2011 to FY 2019.
- Federal guidance from the S. Department of Education encourages states to provide highly-qualiﬁed core content teachers who have received training to support multilingual learners.
- The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation is committed to ensuring Educator Preparation Programs serve diverse learners, including those identiﬁed as
- The 2020 WIDA English Language Development Standards Framework emphasizes the core principle of integrating language instruction with content instruction. As a WIDA state, Georgia is moving decisively toward the integration of content and
- InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards and Learning Progressions for Teachers 1.0 demand that teachers address “cultural and linguistic diversity and the speciﬁc needs of students for whom English is a new language.” Hence, TESOL courses in teacher education programs need to include a focus on linguistic diversity, content and language integration, and culturally sustaining approaches to multilingual
- Georgia’s educational history tells a story of students from a variety of backgrounds facing In October of 2020 three federal cases were under investigation for discrimination of multilingual learners in Georgia. Stephen Owens airms, “Any argument that ELs are not receiving the resources they need to have equal opportunities would be backed up by history, current litigation and student test scores.”
- A S. Department of Justice ﬁnding that Massachusetts was violating the civil rights of students by failing to ensure that their teachers are adequately trained to teach multilingual learners forced the state to put guidelines in place to address this problem. Core academic teachers of multilingual learners, principals, assistant principals, supervisors, and directors who evaluate those teachers must now all obtain training and licensure requirements for the Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement.
- Many states join with Massachusetts in setting minimum requirements for ESOL preparation courses for teacher certiﬁcation in order to both protect the educational rights of multilingual learners and to airm a commitment to address the persistent gap in academic proﬁciency experienced by multilingual learners. States that require this (at least for any classroom with multilingual learners) include: Alabama, Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.