WestEd in the Field

Title

English Language and Literacy Acceleration: Districtwide PD and Accountability Support

For the past several years, WestEd has provided Common Core-related professional development to all teachers and administrators in the K–12 Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District in California.

WestEd’s professional development has helped strengthen Common Core-based academic language and literacy instruction for English language learners and other students in need of support with academic language development. Fairfield-Suisun teachers plan lessons in collaborative teams, watch a trainer demonstrate standards-based instruction in classrooms, and provide one another with feedback on instruction.

In addition, the district's English language services department, with WestEd support, is developing and implementing a long-term English language learner prevention and intervention plan. The department is also monitoring the academic and linguistic progress of English language learners, as well as the quality of instruction in the schools’ English language development programs.

After the first year of WestEd’s professional development, 40.2 percent of the district's English language learners scored proficient or above on the California Standards Test (CST) for English language arts, a marked increase from the 33.1 percent who scored proficient the prior year. As of 2012, 46.9 percent of English language learners throughout the district were proficient or above on the CST for English language arts.