Accommodation for ESOL.
The state of Florida sought for equity in the plight of English Language Learners to curb the widening achievement gap and accommodate the students whom English is not their first language. The Florida Multicultural Education Training and Advocacy, META, Consent Decree aimed to work out for this equity in education for all the ELL pupils. As per the lawsuit, the plaintiffs maintained that English Language Learners were not getting their rightful equal treatment and protection under the law in relation to curricular and co-curricular opportunities in schools. The law therefore changed the way and approach by which students were identifies and assessed certification prerequisites for educators, and the graduation requirements for the ELL students including other amendments and stipulations to achieve equity (August & Hakuta, 1998).
The accommodations as therefore reached to ensure equity included ELL students regardless of how green or new they are to the school or county system being not at all exempted from the graduation requirements with no ELL student being left behind. META determined that there is dire need to provide equitable comprehensive and concentrated to ELL students. The Consent Decree legally addresses the civil rights of English Language Learners structurally. It candidly provides that:
Under section 1, Identification and Assessment, that all students with limited proficiency in English language must be identified and assessed properly to ensure appropriate services provision. Under section 2, Equal Access to Appropriate Programming, all students in public schools in Florida have a right to programming appropriately to their level of proficiency in English, academic achievement, and according to any special requirement they may have. Under section 3, Equal Access to Appropriate Categorical and Other Programs for ELL Students, all ELL students have the right to equal access to all programs that are appropriate to their needs academically regardless of their English proficiency level (August & Hakuta, 1998).
Section 4, Personnel, displays the certificate coverage and in-service training teachers must hold to qualify as an educator for the ESOL students with set standards for the personnel giving ESOL instruction. Section 5, Monitoring Issues charges The Florida Department of Education responsible for monitoring the local district schools for compliance with the stipulations of the Consent Decree. Section 6, Outcome Measures mandates the Florida Department of Education to develop a system of evaluation addressing equal access and effectiveness of the program. This checks and monitors the progress of ELL students drawing comparisons with non-ELL and LEP population against rates of retention, graduation, dropout, grade point averages and overall state assessment scores (No Author, 1990).
August, D. & Hakuta, K. (1998). Education language minority children. National Academy Press.
No Author, (1990), The Florida Consent Decree: A Summary, Web: http://www.scps.k12.fl.us/Portals/195/assets/doc/ESOL/Parent%20Info/ESOLMETAConsentSummary.pdf, on January 14, 2016.