picProgram Philosophy

The Danbury Public School System recognizes that English language learners (ELL’s) must acquire an additional culture and language. The students will acquire a level of English proficiency in listening; speaking,reading and writing that will allow full participation in the mainstream classroom.

Goals and objectives for English Language Learners (ELL’s) are similar to those established for regular school program and are designed to bring students to the same educational performance level that is expected of English dominant children.

Our ESL/Bilingual programs are based on a philosophy reflected in the following:

•All English Language Learners (ELL’s) are capable of learning to high standards when provided adequate learning environments, appropriate materials, and qualified teaching;

•Learning is a process of apprenticeship on which novices become experts with the guidance of the teacher and peers in social and academic situations that are meaningful, engaging, purposeful and context-rich;

•Students bring great personal knowledge to the learning of other languages. This knowledge and their primary language, will aid students in learning;

•Language is more than using correct grammar and vocabulary; instructional content must move language beyond the word and sentence level to approximate natural discourse;

•Teaching must be carefully scaffolded and cyclically structured to promote inquiry into language and its development;

•Inan ESL/Bilingual classroom, students engage in language and content learning, respect cultural differences, and develop and increase self-esteem.

•Learning strategies need to be explicitly taught to students;

•Evaluation, curriculum, and assessments are aligned and reflect high standards and best practices.

•All parents can become successful partners in the education of ELL’s.