ENL Program (English as a New Language)

The goal of the ENL program is to provide a link between the student’s home country and their new country, by making connections with their language and culture in the American experience. Since our population is small, Joy Elementary is the magnet school for students in grades K-4, Strough Middle School is the building that services middle level students and all high school ENL students receive services at RFA. Countries that are currently represented by ENL students include China, Puerto Rico, Colombia, the Philippines, South Korea, Italy, and Bosnia.
The major goal of the first year of ENL instruction is rapid language acquisition with emphasis on listening, speaking, reading and writing in English. In order to accomplish this goal, non-English speaking students spend 2-3 periods a day in an ENL classroom where a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere is created to allow students to take risks and use their new language skills. Research states that it can take a student up to 5 years to become totally fluent in a second language and up to 7 years to develop the cognitive academic language proficiency (the language of the content areas!). The goal of second and third year ENL instruction is to develop that content area language that they need to be successful in school. This is an enormous task since all ENL students are required to take the same courses that native speakers have to take. They are entitled to some testing modifications such as: extended time, tests read to them, and the use of bilingual glossaries and dictionaries. The subject matter at the secondary level is quite demanding. Content area support is given with a focus on test taking strategies and reading and writing strategies.
All students who have a language other than English spoken at home should be screened for ENL services. Home Language Surveys are filled out at registration that indicates if there is a foreign language that is spoken in the home by either the parent/guardian or the student. An informal conversation with the student in a private setting determines whether testing with a formal instrument will be made. The formal test that is given to new ENL students in the district is the revised NYS Language Assessment Battery (LAB-R). This test provides the ENL teacher with the level of proficiency that the student has in English.

Any questions regarding ENL services in the district can be directed to the Curriculum Office, 338-6512 at the District Office.

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