THE ESL PROGRAM IN STANLY COUNTY SCHOOLS:
The purpose of the ESL program in the high schools in Stanly County Schools is to provided sheltered content-based instruction to students who speak a second language at home. The ESL program also enhances listening, speaking, reading and writing English skills for students who are eligible to receive the services. Their eligibility is based on the scores of an initial placement test. Once they are identified, their eligibility status depends upon the scores of an annual state test in English called the ACCESS test. Ideally, the transition from the ESL program to the mainstream classroom only lasts a short period of time. However, research has shown that it takes an ESL student 3-5 years to catch up with their native speakers peers in their proficiency of academic language in English.
The ESL program provides instruction on different levels of the English language acquisition process from beginning (newcomers), intermediate and advanced levels until students exit the program. After they exit the program, a two year monitoring process starts to ensure the language barrier does not impede learning in the content areas.
The ESL program also encourages students from culturally diverse background to share their diversity with their schools and the community. They participate regularly in cultural activities such as the Hmong New Year celebration, multicultural festivals and the International Talent Show hosted in different schools throughout our district each year. These events are planned by ESL teachers, ESL parents and ESL students who are eager to represent the uniqueness of their cultural heritage.
Finally, the ESL department facilitates communication between schools and culturally diverse families. We have an interpreter who is available to make parent contacts for students who are in the ESL program.
Thank you for all you do for our ESL students and remember a smile is the same in all languages.