In the last several decades, English learners (ELs)1 have been among the fastest-growing populations in our Nation’s schools. ELs comprise nearly 10 percent of the student population nationwide, and in many schools, local educational agencies (LEAs) and States, account for an even higher percentage of the student population. 2 ELs also comprise a highly diverse group of students who bring with them valuable cultural and linguistic assets, including their home languages. Yet despite these many assets, ELs face significant opportunity and academic achievement gaps compared to their non-EL peers. For example, in school year 2013-2014, the high school graduation rate for ELs was just 62.6 percent, compared to 82.3 percent for all students.3 With effective, research-based supports and access to excellent educators, ELs can achieve English language proficiency and perform academically at the same high levels as their non-EL peers.
Federal Programs and Grants