English Learners

How does Eden Prairie Schools Define English Learner?

Eden Praire Schools follows the state definition of English learner: 
“As defined in Minnesota under 2017 Minnesota Statutes, section 124D. 59, subdivision 2 and English learner is “a pupil in kindergarten through grade 12 or a prekindergarten student enrolled in an approved voluntary prekindergarten program under section 124D.151 or a school readiness plus program who meets the requirements under subdivision 2a or the following requirements: 
1. the pupil, as declared by a parent or guardian uses a language other than English; and 
2. the pupil is determined by a valid assessment measuring the pupil’s English language proficiency and by developmentally appropriate measures, which might include observations, teacher judgment, parent recommendations, or developmentally appropriate assessment instruments, to lack the necessary English skills to participate fully in academic classes taught in English.” 

How do you determine my child needs to be screened for EL service?

Minnesota Language Survey (MNLS)  Every student who enrolls in Eden Prairie Schools, regardless of linguistic background, is required to complete the Minnesota Language Survey.  If any of the answers indicate a language other than English, Eden Prairie Schools is required to screen your child for English Learner services. Eden Prairie Schools does not qualify or deny students EL screening or identification based on their surname or language minority status.

How does my child qualify for EL service?

Screening  Eden Prairie Schools must screen children who have a language other than English listed on the MNLS. Students are screened according to grade level:
Kindergarten W-APT: 1st semester Kindergarteners will take two of the four domains of the screener (listening & speaking) 
Kindergarten W-APT: 2nd semester Kindergarteners will take all four domains of the screener (listening, speaking, reading, and writing)
WIDA Screener: 1st - 12th graders who are new to the country, or do not have ACCESS test results from the school year
Previous ACCESS Scores: 1st - 12th graders who have taken the ACCESS test during the last school year in Minnesota, or another WIDA consortium state


Students are identified as EL if the scores on their screener are as follows:

Kindergarten W-APT: 

WIDA Screener: 

Previous ACCESS Scores: 

Notification:  When your child first qualifies for EL service, Eden Prairie Schools must send you written notification within ten (10) days of being enrolled in the EL program.  If your child continues to qualify for EL service the next year, Eden Prairie Schools  will send you notification within thirty (30) days of enrollment in the program, or the beginning of the school year.  If you do not want your child served in the EL program, you must provide written notice to withdraw your child from the program every year that your child qualifies for EL service. 

What kind of service will my child receive? What if I don’t want them to receive EL service?

Language Instruction Educational Program :The goal of Eden Prairie Schools EL program is to help students build a foundation of content knowledge, academic problem-solving skills, and language proficiency. To meet this goal, Eden Prairie Schools follows the WIDA English Language Development (ELD) standards, and Minnesota's Academic standards in ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies, and Physical Education/Health. EPS serves students both in their core classes, and in pull out, EL-only classrooms depending on each student’s linguistic needs.  The following describe how our EL service is provided:

Service Models: 

  • Pull out English language development (ELD) - These classes are taught by a licensed EL teacher, outside of the student’s core classes, and focus on language development in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. These courses are taught in English only. 
  • Co-teaching & Push In - A licensed EL teacher goes into the classroom and provides language 
  • Sheltered EL classes - These classes are offered at our high school for newcomers at EL levels 1-2 who need core credits in content areas. These classes  are taught by a licensed content teacher in collaboration with an EL teacher. The grade level content is taught in English and scaffolded for the students language proficiency level.
  • Consultation with classroom teachers - EL teachers regularly collaborate with classroom teachers 
  • Amount & Scope of Instruction: In addition to quality core instruction that is scaffolded by classroom teachers, Eden Prairie Schools serves ELs in one or more of the above program models depending on their English proficiency level, time in US schools, and educational history. Generally, students receive more time in EL service at lower proficiency levels, and less time in EL service at higher proficiency levels. 
  • Refusing EL Service: A parent/guardian has the right at any time to withdraw their child from the EL program by providing written notice to the school principal.  The written notice is good for one year.  Parents/guardians may re-enroll the child in the EL program at any time upon request. Parents/guardians must send another letter withdrawing their child from EL service if their child continues to qualify for EL service the following year.  

How is my child’s English proficiency measured?

Annual English Proficiency Assessment: Every year, Eden Prairie Schools is required to assess the English language proficiency level of all students identified as EL. Because Minnesota belongs to the WIDA Consortium, we are required to assess ELs using the ACCESS for ELLs or Alternate ACCESS for ELLs assessments.  
Students are assessed on the language of math, language of science, language of social studies, language of language arts, and social/instructional language by listening, reading, speaking, and writing (four domains). Students can practice the test at: https://wbte.drcedirect.com/WIDA/portals/wida.

When will my child complete EL service?

Exiting: Students are exited from EL service when they have met proficiency on the ACCESS assessment.  Eden Prairie Schools must follow the state exit criteria: 

Students reach proficiency with a overall composite score of 4.5 on the ACCESS test, and three domains (reading, writing, listening & speaking) at 3.5 or higher.  The EL teacher must reassess students in the domain that is lowest to exit them from EL service. If a student has a score of 3.5 or higher in all 4 domains, students are automatically exited from EL service.

What if my child needs additional support after they exit the program?

Monitoring: When a child is exited from the EL program, EL teachers collaborate with classroom teachers, administrators, counseling staff, and district staff, to ensure the students are successful in their content classes.  This may include checking student grades and assessment scores, meeting with students.