English Language Learners


    When a parent/guardian registers their child in the Elizabeth Forward SD, they must complete a 'Home Language Survey' form. This form requires the parent/guardian to answer several questions about the primary language spoken in the home. If the student’s first language is something other than English, the Director of Student Services, Dr. Randal Sydeski, is notified.  If necessary, he will arrange a meeting with the parent/guardian and building principal(s) and obtain appropriate resources through the Allegheny Intermediate Unit (AIU).


    An AIU teacher may implement an additional screening process using the 'WIDA Online Screener'. (Students are assessed in reading, writing, listening, and speaking the English language.)  This testing provides the AIU teacher with a student’s English language proficiency level which helps to plan their frequency of English as a Second Language (ESL) instruction.
    NOTE: Interpreters can be used when necessary to communicate with both students and/or parents/guardians.
    ESL students also take an annual exam known as the ACCESS test to determine their mastery and growth of the English language. 


    ESL students are taken out of the regular education classroom and are provided with one-on-one instruction in a separate classroom. Lessons are planned using the PA Core Standards and PA English Language Proficiency Standards in Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking.


    Results from the ACCESS test, academic achievement in all subject areas, and teacher input are compiled to determine if a student may be exited from the district ESL services. Once exited, EL students will be monitored for four years by the school district.


    ESL students CANNOT be retained in a grade, based soley on their lack of English proficiency.
    If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Randal Sydeski at 412-896-2309 or at rsydeski@efsd.net.

    The Pennsylvania Standards for English Language Development can be downloaded by clicking HERE