COVID-19 FTP Title III/English Learners FAQ

Medium

Q. How must the LEA provide services to English learners during school closure?

A.

  • If the school is closed and not operating virtually, no services are required for English learners or students with disabilities.
  • If the school is operating via e-learning, the LEA must provide services to English Learners. Note the structure and schedule of services may look different from what the school typically offers when meeting in person, but EL staff must collaborate with certified classroom teachers to ensure the e-learning content and delivery are accessible for ELs and that ILPs are followed.

Q. How do LEAs ensure Title III funds are used correctly?

A. There are three required areas of spending within Title III grant application: 1) language instruction educational program (LIEP); 2) professional development (PD); and 3) parent, family and community engagement. As the timeline for distant learning develops, consider how the distant learning setting will impact the LEAs Title III budget and spending. The LEA may need to revise the Title III budget to remove cancelled PD event expenses and add supplemental resources students need for home use.

  • Language Instruction Educational Program (LIEP): Instruction in the distance-learning context will require shifts in implementation, materials, resources, “face-to-face” direct instructional time and so on. Instruction of all types should be determined based on ELs’ proficiency level and needs in each language domain (reading, writing, listening and speaking). Additional resources may need to be purchased to ensure instruction meets the needs of students and is relevant to and practical in the new context. It is important that Title III funds be used only for those materials and resources needed to supplement the core English language development instruction of English learners. It must not be used to purchase materials that all other students already have access to through other funds (e.g., if all students receive one-to-one Chromebooks, the LEA may not purchase Chromebooks for ELs with Title III dollars).
  • Professional Development (PD): As LEAs move to distance learning, they may consider using Title III funds for the cost of PD in innovative ways, such as downloading or printing materials from online EL-related PD sources. Please use caution to ensure expenditures do not supplant what is already available for other programming.
  • Parent, Family, and Community Engagement: With social distancing, in-person parent and community events are no longer a healthy, viable option. The LEA should consider other modes of engaging families. For example, the LEA could set up online video chats and webinars, make phone and video calls to individual families, and arrange for translation services. Other options that the LEA could utilize are those that do not require reliable internet access. These options could include distributing board games, books, and materials that incorporate storytelling and reflection, language practice, build on native language skills, and provide for interaction with family members. LEAs should also consider reaching out to community-based organizations for culturally specific resources and ideas about how to help families talk about COVID-19 and cope with isolation, stress, and anxiety.

Q. How must the LEA provide services to English learners during school closure?

A. If the school is closed and not operating virtually, no services are required for English learners or students with disabilities. However, if the school is operating via e-learning, the LEA must provide services to English Learners. Note the structure and schedule of services may look different from what the school typically offers when meeting in person, but EL staff must collaborate with certified classroom teachers to ensure the e-learning content and delivery are accessible for ELs and that ILPs are followed.