Multilingual Learner Program (MLP) Philosophy
It is the philosophy of the CCSD MLP teaching staff that Multilingual Learners (MLs) should learn to communicate in English in a variety of modes within a wide range of cultural settings or situations. CCSD is therefore committed to educational excellence and continuous achievement for all MLs and promotes ML instruction through content learning. This empowers students to meet the rigorous demands of the SC curriculum by incorporating sound methodology with a curriculum aligned to the standards to maximize student learning.
Best Practices for MLs
Best practices are intended to support multilingual learners (MLs) in all classes, no matter their proficiency level. These strategies are expected to be used by all teachers within lessons, assignments, and assessments to support MLs and all learners. Best practices are strategies that educators can quickly implement within daily instruction, activities, and classroom assessments.
For additional information regarding best practices, please visit the Best Practices Digital Handbook created by South Carolina's Title III Program Office to learn more about how to support MLs during instruction.
Universal design principles address policies and practices intended to improve access to learning and assessments for all students. Universal design principles are essential to developing and reviewing instructional and assessment content because some ways of presenting content make it difficult for some students to show what they know. When educators employ universal design techniques, they can better understand what students know and can do. Universal design techniques should be applied consistently in instruction and assessments. In contrast to retrofitting, these techniques are integrated into teaching and assessment from the start. Educators should consider the following principles of universal design:
- Inclusion of diverse student populations;
- Precisely defined instructional and assessment constructs;
- Maximally accessible, non-biased content;
- Compatibility with accommodations;
- Simple, clear, and intuitive instructions and procedures;
- Maximum readability and comprehensibility; and
- Maximum legibility.
Universally designed instructional and assessment content may reduce the need for accommodations and alternate assessments. Nevertheless, universal design cannot eliminate the need for accommodations or alternate assessments. Universal design can provide educators with more valid inferences about the achievement levels of all students. The universal design of assessments does not simply mean that instruction and assessments are carried out in a computer-based environment. With greater implementation of technological solutions, thinking about accommodations and universal design may change. Traditionally, educators have thought of universal design as coming first and accommodations being applied during instruction and assessment. With current technology, educational stakeholders can build some accommodations into instructional and content for evaluation design and redefine some accommodations as universal supports to empower greater numbers of students with optimal accessibility options. View the South Carolina Accessibility Support Document January 2019 for additional information.
Allowable accommodations for MLs on state assessments should be regularly used in the classroom.
Accommodations for MLs
An accommodation changes how information and concepts are presented or practiced ensuring that each student has the opportunities and support needed to learn. Accommodations do not reduce the learning expectations and should be chosen based on the student’s individual needs and not applied arbitrarily to all MLs. Accommodations are not to be viewed as an advantage to the student; accommodations provide access to the content for the student. Accommodations:
- Provide access to grade-level curriculum;
- Alter the environment, not the curriculum;
- Do not change the learning outcomes;
- Happen in the content-area classroom; and
- Should not impact grading, though how learning is assessed may change.
For additional information regarding accommodations for MLs, please visit the Accommodations Digital Handbook created by South Carolina's Title III Program Office to learn more about how to support MLs during instruction.