A Descriptive Study of Charter Schools Serving Limited English Proficient Students.
Menken, Kate, ed.
National Council of La Raza, Washington, DC.
No of pages:
This study was conducted during the 1999-2000 academic year to examine the growing trend of charter schools serving English Language Learners (ELLs, also known as limited English proficient or LEP students). The research describes services currently being provided to ELLs in a diverse sample of charter schools across the country. For nine charter schools, descriptive case studies provide common characteristics, factors of success, and issues that challenge the schools They offer insight into the areas of curriculum and instruction, academic and non-academic support services, educational leadership, assessment of student progress, and program evaluation. In addition to these detailed findings for each school, cross-case analysis indicated that: (1) the mission of a charter school and vision of the founding members greatly impact the degree to which the school is positioned to serve ELLs; (2) multiple factors contribute to the capacity of a charter school to conduct adequate instructional and curricular planning to serve ELLs; (3) the quality of instructional and site-based leadership is a critical factor in ensuring the academic success of ELLs in a charter school; (4) relationships and partnerships with external organizations contribute to the degree of success achieved by a charter school; and (5) the quantity and quality of professional development opportunities afforded to charter school teachers has a significant impact on the quality of services provided to ELLs. (Appendices contain a chart of program models for LEP students; listing of advisory board members, researchers, and coordinating staff; survey materials; and a description of charter school legislation. Contains 34 references.) (EV)