English as a New Language

  • English as a New Language (ENL)


    The English as a New Language (ENL) program provides instruction in English to students who are non-native speakers of English.  Our ENL program is designed to help students integrate as quickly as possible into the daily academic work and cultural activities of the regular classroom and school life.  English Language Learner (ELL) students are encouraged to participate in all school activities, and their parents are urged to join their school’s Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs) to help them assimilate into their new school and community.


    ENL Teachers:

    Christina Moser (Old Mill Road School and H.D. Fayette School)

    Cathy Marketos (Camp Avenue School and H.D. Fayette School)


    Procedures for Assessing ELL Students



    As part of kindergarten screening, students who appear to be English Language Learners (ELL), formerly known as Limited English Proficient (LEP) students, are screened by the ENL teacher. The ENL teacher also screens ELL new entrants to the district. One method that is used to determine the student’s predominant language is the Home Language Questionnaire (HLQ).  If the responses on the HLQ indicate that a language other than English is spoken at home or that the student understands a language other than English, an informal interview in the native language and English is conducted. If the informal interview indicates that the student is possibly ELL, the ENL teacher administers the Language Assessment Battery-Revised (LAB-R) to determine language proficiency. If the student scores at or below the cut-off point on the LAB-R, the student is determined to be limited in oral proficiency and ELL services are provided. If a student scores at or below the statewide reference point, the student is considered limited in proficiency in reading English and will receive ENL services. 


    Beginning in 2014, a new state test was established for the statewide identification of English Language Learners.  The New York State Identification Test English Language Learners (NYSITELL), is based on the New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT), but abbreviated in length. In aligning the NYSESLAT and the NYSITELL, NYSED provided an initial identification test that enables educators to determine a student’s level of English proficiency and subsequently provide the appropriate instruction.  The NYSITELL was developed from the same types of questions. 


    State and federal laws and regulations require that all ELL students receive services until they score proficiency on the NYSESLAT.


    Students who are referred for a bilingual assessment have usually been in the ELL program for at least two to three years. Traditionally, the referral comes from the ENL teachers who discuss their concerns about the student’s progress with the building team and/or the school psychologist as to  how the disability is interfering with the acquisition of academic and/or language skills.


    Prior to referral, general education supports are attempted to determine if the student can make progress through these interventions.


    These supports may include:

    • ENL program
    • Academic Intervention Services (AIS)
    • Speech/Language services
    • Informal small group instruction
    • Curriculum modifications
    • Before/after school support

    If the student’s home language is other than English, this is noted on the referral form in order that further evaluations can be completed in the student’s native language.  If the parents’ dominant language is not English, they will receive all notifications in their dominant language. They will also receive the Parent’s Guide to Special Education in their native language, if available.


    At the CSE meeting, an interpreter will be provided for parents if their native language is other than English. When considering if a disability is present, the CSE will consider the following factors: 

    • the length of time the student has been in the United States;
    • the amount of instruction that the student has received in the United States as well as his or her home country;
    • the length of time the student has been receiving ESL instruction;
    • attendance in school;
    • the student’s proficiency in his native language as well as English proficiency; and
    • the types of general education supports that the student has received.

    In all cases, the student’s educational, cultural and experiential background will be considered by the Committee to determine if these factors are contributing to the student’s learning or behavioral problems.  In making a determination of eligibility for special education and related services, a student may not be identified as a child with a disability if the determinant factor for such determination is limited English proficiency.

    When the CSE develops and IEP for an ENL student with a disability, that student must be provided the opportunity to participate in the district’s ESL program.  ESL programs should be considered general education core instruction for all ELL students.  The CSE does not have the authority to determine that a student with a disability will not receive any ESL instruction unless the student has been re-designated as English proficient pursuant to Part 154 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.