English Language Proficiency Assessment ESOL Eligibility Letters

Understanding your student's eligibility for ESOL Services based on English language proficiency assessment results

Students who are identified as English learners (ELs) or potential ELs are assessed to measure their English language proficiency and determine  eligibility for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) services.

  • Students identified as ELs are assessed annually with the WIDA ACCESS test or another state-approved English language proficiency (ELP) assessment. This assessment checks how their English language skills are developing and determines if they will continue to be eligible for ESOL services. 
  • Students enrolling in Fairfax County Public Schools who are identified as potential ELs are assessed with a WIDA Screener. This assessment measures their entering English language proficiency and to determines if they are eligible to receive ESOL services.

When a student takes any ELP assessment, parents and guardians receive a letter communicating the student's results. This letter also communicates whether the student is eligible for ESOL services based on their scores. Test results are generally available for parents and guardians within two weeks after a student takes the assessment. Contents of the Fairfax County Public Schools eligibility letters are provided below. 

Eligible for ESOL Services (ELP Level 1-4)

Student Name ________________ Date __________

English Language Proficiency (ELP) Level _____          

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s):

Based on the results of a WIDA English language proficiency assessment*, your child is receiving services for English learners (ELs) aligned to their English language proficiency (ELP) level as part of the instructional program in Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS). Services are provided to help students reach their fullest academic potential, obtain a meaningful educational experience and meet challenging state and local academic standards.

If your child’s educational records from their previous school includes a current WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® score report your child’s ELP level will be adjusted to reflect the ELP level on that score report.

Identification of English Learners

Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, U.S. schools are required to identify potential ELs and assess their English language proficiency level. To meet this requirement, parents or guardians complete the Home Language Survey as part of the registration process. If a language other than English is spoken in the home, families are referred to any of the Student Registration sites for registration and the federally approved English language proficiency assessment (in reading, writing, listening, and speaking).

Kindergarten students who live in a home where a language other than English is spoken are administered a WIDA test in September to determine if they are English learners and eligible to receive kindergarten services for ELs. Students in grades 1-12 are assigned one of five ELP levels:

Kindergarten ELs Level 1 Entering Level 2 Emerging Level 3 Developing Level 4 Expanding Level 6 Reaching
Eligible to Receive ESOL Services Academic Performance Monitored for 2 years

Annual English Language Proficiency Assessment Results

Each spring in Virginia, an annual ELP assessment, WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® is administered to ELs in grades K-12. Your school’s English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) teacher can review your child’s reading, writing, listening and speaking proficiency scores with you, which will give you additional information about your child’s English language development progress.

Language Instruction Educational Program

The goal of the language instruction educational program is to assist ELs in becoming proficient in English and meeting the same challenging state content standards as all other students are expected to meet. Students at ELP Levels 1-4 receive ESOL services. Students scoring 4.4 or above on the WIDA ACCESS for ELLs® 2.0 are considered ELP Level 6, and designated English proficient. ESOL services provide the academic foundation, English literacy, and additional supports that English learners need to meet the same grade-level goals as their English proficient peers, including promotion, graduation, and become college and career ready. To do this, ELs are enrolled in age- appropriate grade levels and are taught academic English through the content areas of language arts, math, science and social studies. Instructional materials for ELs are aligned with the grade-level standards and the WIDA English Language Development standards to support both content and language learning across the curriculum.

The amount of time each student receives ESOL services differs. A variety of assessments is used throughout the year to measure progress. Assessment results are used by teachers to plan instruction to meet your child’s individual needs. Students move at their own rate along the language acquisition continuum and move proficiency levels when they meet the specific criteria for the level. The majority of the ELs in FCPS receive ESOL services for an average of three years before reaching English proficiency.

If your child needs services in addition to ESOL, such as special education services or Section 504, a collaborative team, including the ESOL and special education teachers, develop a plan together to meet the objectives of the student’s individualized education program (IEP) or 504 plan. These services are provided in conjunction with ESOL services.

Exit Criteria

The results from the annual English language proficiency assessment, WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0®, determine students’ progress from proficiency level to level and ultimately determine if they no longer require ESOL services. A student is designated English proficient, ELP level 6 when they have a composite score of 4.4 and above on the WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® test. After reaching ELP Level 6, students are monitored for two full academic years to ensure that they are able to participate meaningfully in the regular educational program.

Expected Rate of Graduation

School divisions in Virginia expect all students, including ELs, to graduate within four years of entering the 9th grade. However, federal provisions provide that students may graduate within five or six years, if needed. FCPS is very successful in providing appropriate instruction to help all students graduate, with a Virginia on-time graduation rate over 91%.

Parental Rights

Parents and guardians have the right to opt their children out or decline ESOL services. If you decide to decline these services, you must complete and sign the Refusal of ESOL Services form, which is available at your child’s school and filed in your child’s cumulative folder. Even if services are declined, your child will continue to retain their status as an EL and will participate annually in the English language proficiency assessment, WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0®, as required by federal legislation, until they reach ELP Level 6 and are considered English proficient. Parents and guardians have the right to resume ESOL services at any time during the school year.

If you would like further information about your child’s progress or ESOL services, please contact his or her teachers at the school. Thank you for your ongoing support of your child’s education. We look forward to working together with you to help your child reach his or her fullest academic potential.

Sincerely,

Rich Pollio

Director, Office of ESOL Services

*Kindergartners take the WIDA ACCESS Placement Test™ (W-APT) in September. Students in grades K-12 who enroll in FCPS during the year take either, the WIDA Measure of Developing English Language™ (MODEL) or the WIDA Screener.

Eligible for ESOL Services (ELP Level 1-4) - Results Letter Translations

Select a preferred language to view the FCPS translation of this eligibility and results letter

Amharic
Arabic
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English
Korean
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Exiting ESOL Services with Ongoing Monitoring (ELP Level 6)

Student Name ________________ Date __________

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s),

In all school divisions in Virginia, students with a home language other than, or in addition to, English are administered an English language proficiency assessment to determine if they are eligible for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Services.

Based on the results of a WIDA™ English language proficiency test, your child meets the requirements for English language proficiency (ELP) level 6 and is considered a former English learner (EL). ELs in grades 1-12 are considered proficient when they earn a composite score of 4.4 or above on the ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® test.

At ELP level 6, a student should be able to use and understand:

  • organized, cohesive, and coherent expression of ideas
  • a variety of grammatical structures matched to purpose
  • a broad range of sentence patterns characteristic of particular content areas
  • technical and abstract content-area language
  • words and expressions with precise meaning across content areas

Federal law requires that students be monitored for two full academic years after being reclassified as formerly ELs, to ensure that they are able to participate meaningfully in the regular educational program. In Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS), administrators, classroom teachers, and collaborative team members at each school will monitor the academic performance of your child on an on-going basis. In addition, each semester the principal or designee of your school will formally document the academic progress of your child by reviewing a variety of information to include:

  • performance on standardized achievement tests;
  • grades in content area classes;
  • student performance on assigned class work, homework, or projects; or
  • teacher observations.

If necessary, the school will identify and implement specific interventions and enrichment support targeting your child’s needs. These can include special courses, materials, programs, tutoring opportunities, and extended time for learning. FCPS is dedicated to serving all students appropriately so that they are able to achieve high academic standards.

If your child’s educational records show that he or she was receiving ESOL services based on a current WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® assessment, your child will be re-designated as an English learner until he or she meets the criteria for English proficiency on a WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® assessment.

If you would like further information about your child’s progress, please contact his or her teachers at the school. Thank you for your ongoing support of your child’s education. We look forward to working together with you to help your child reach his or her fullest academic potential.

Sincerely,

Rich Pollio

Director, Office of ESOL Services

 

*Kindergartners take the WIDA ACCESS Placement Test™ (W-APT) in September. Students in grades K-12 who enroll in FCPS during the year take either, the WIDA Measure of Developing English Language™ (MODEL) or the WIDA Screener.

 

Exiting ESOL Services with Ongoing Monitoring (ELP Level 6) - Results Letter Translations

Select a preferred language to view the FCPS translation of this eligibility and results letter

Amharic
Arabic
Chinese
Farsi
English
Korean
Spanish
Urdu
Vietnamese

 

Not Eligible for ESOL Services

Student Name ________________ Date __________

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s):

In all school divisions in Virginia, students with a home language, other than or in addition to, English are administered an English language proficiency assessment to determine if they are eligible for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Services. Kindergarten students take the WIDA ACCESS Placement Test™ (W-APT) in September. Students in grades K-12 who enroll in FCPS during the year take either, the WIDA Measure of Developing English Language™ (MODEL) or the WIDA Screener™.

Based on the results of a WIDA™ English language proficiency test, your child meets the requirements for English language proficiency. As a result, your child is designated English proficient and is not eligible for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) services.

If your child’s educational records show that he or she was receiving ESOL services based on a current WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® assessment, your child will be re-designated as an English learner until he or she meets the criteria for English proficiency on a WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0® assessment.

If you have questions regarding your child’s assessment results, please contact his or her teachers at the school. Thank you for your ongoing support of your child’s education. We look forward to working together with you to help your child reach his or her fullest academic potential.

Sincerely,

Rich Pollio

Director, Office of ESOL Services

 

*Kindergartners take the WIDA ACCESS Placement Test™ (W-APT) in September. Students in grades K-12 who enroll in FCPS during the year take either, the WIDA Measure of Developing English Language™ (MODEL) or the WIDA Screener.

Not Eligible for ESOL Services - Results Letter Translations

Select a preferred language to view the FCPS translation of this eligibility and results letter

Amharic
Arabic
Chinese
Farsi
English
Korean
Spanish
Urdu
Vietnamese

 

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See information on grade level testing.

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