Welcome to the English as a Second Language Program
MISSION OF THE ESL PROGRAM
The mission of the Birmingham City Schools' English as a Second Language Program (ESL) is to help English language learners become full and active participants of the classroom experience by meeting measurable achievement objectives and English proficiency levels.
GOALS OF THE ESL PROGRAM
Birmingham City School's goals for English language learners conform to the WIDA Standards for ELLs, which help educators determine children's English language proficiency and how to appropriately challenge them to reach at higher levels. The standards cover social and instructional language of language arts, mathematics, science and social studies.
The ESL program in Birmingham city offers a combination of self-contained services, push-in services and pull-out services for all limited-English Learners. In addition, support services are provided to all classroom teachers by means of professional development within and outside the school. Students are placed in the ESL program as a result of their performance on an English language proficiency test that evaluates their listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. ESL services are provided to meet specific needs ,depending upon the grade level and ability level of the individual students. The WIDA ACCESS Standards are used in combination with a variety of strategies and methodologies to teach English: whole language, phonics, oral language skills, cooperative learning, differentiated instruction and integrated reading. Emphasis is placed upon the development of the four communication skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Currently, over 700 English Learners enrolled in Birmingham City Schools and they are served by 12 ESL teachers and 5 bilingual paraprofessionals.