Does Your Local Control Accountability Plan Deliver on the Promise of Improved or Increased Services for English Learners?
The intent of California's Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) is to give districts more flexibility with their state funding but at the same time to create a new school finance system that recognizes that students with specific demographic factors need greater support to address their academic needs and improve educational outcomes:  English Learners, low income students and foster youth.  As Governor Brown stated in January 2013, "Equal treatment for children in unequal situations is not justice".  LCFF recognized that English Learners have additional academic needs requiring additional resources to "improve or increase services".  LCFF was designed as a step towards a more equitable school finance system. Read more...
Full LCAP rubrics download
Seizing the Opportunity download
Seizing the Opportunity - Spanish download

California is the First State in the Nation to Define and Identify English Learners who After Many Years are Struggling to Succeed

Sacramento:  Three out of four (74%) English Learner students in grades 6 -12 have been in California schools for 7 years or more and are still without the English skills they need to succeed academically.  Because this is longer than it should take to attain English proficiency, they are called "Long Term English Learners" (LTELs).  The numbers compiled by the California Department of Education for the first time by any state in the nation, is part of an effort to ensure these students get the educational support they need.   This is the first of what will be annual releases of school level and district level data on LTELs being reported as a result of legislation passed in 2012, (AB 2193, Lara) that defined who a Long Term English Learner (LTEL) is and also set criteria for identifying Students at Risk of Becoming a Long Term English Learner.  No other state in the union has shone such a clear light on this issue. Read More...
Sobrato Press download
CEEL Press download
LAUSD download


 "The California Campaign for Biliteracy"

by Laurie Olsen,Ph.D.

A CaliforniansTogether Publication


Building upon the momentum and statewide engagement in the State Seal of Biliteracy, Californians Together is announcing "The California Campaign for Biliteracy".   Parents, students and districts are asking about tools to help development multiple pathways to biliteracy prek-12th grade leading to all students being eligible for the State Seal of Biliteracy.  This campaign describes and supports the development of strong, articulated, equitably accessible preschool through high school programs and learning opportunities that will prepare students with high level proficiency in two or more languages. 

Thispublication is a tool to help schools and districts build multiple pathways tobiliteracy.  Included in the publicationis information about the benefits and background on biliteracy,  language learning opportunities, awardcriteria, and guidance to begin a district effort to implement multiplepathways to biliteracy.

Completethe order form with this announcement, and fax, email or mail with payment bycheck, p.o. or credit card to:


525 East Seventh Street, #207
Long Beach,California, CA 90813
562-436-1822 (fax)

Questions:  call 562-983-1333

Click to download publication 

Order form download

Local Control Funding Formula - How to Make a Difference for English Learners
Training Session.
Whittier download
San Diego download
Monterey download
San Bernardino download
Berkeley download
San Jose download
Oxnard download
Fresno download
Marysville download
North San Diego download
invitation download

English Learners and the Common Core: A Parent Toolkit
"English Learner Success in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS):
Your Voice, Your Advocacy: A Guide for Parents on How Your Support and the CCSS can Help Your Children Succeed in School"
Available in English and Spanish
This guide has been developed to help parents understand what the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are and how these standards will impact the academic success of English learners once they are implemented in the classroom. The guide provides information for parents to use when speaking with their child’s teacher, principal and other school staff to make sure he or she receives the learning supports to succeed academically. The Toolkit includes: • Background information on the opportunities and challenges that the Common Core Standards present for curriculum, instruction and assessment of English Learners • Focus on Common Core teaching practices and what instruction should look like in the classroom • Description of extra help English learners will need to meet the new Standards • Talking points and questions for parents to insert the needs of English Learners in Common Core Standards dialogues and discussions at their district or school site and the CCSS can Help Your Children Succeed in School 
Parent Toolkit order form download
Parents Guide - English download
Parent Guide Spanish download

Local Control Funding Formula and English Learners- Resources
The enactment of the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) provisions has created a new landscape for California school finance.  Much confusion exists about what the impact of LCFF is on district responsibilities regarding programs for English Learners (EL). In addition, California Rural Legal assistance (CRLA), California Association for Bilingual Education (CABE and Californians Together sent a letter to all district and county superintendents as a reminder of the continuing state and federal obligations with respect to both programs and funding of services of EL.  Download the full letter below and a power point to explain the content of the letter. Californians Together, CRLA, CABE and California Latino School Boards Association have been providing workshops for DELAC members and parent leaders across the state.  Below are resources from the training and tools that can be used with parents and educators.
LCFF Superintendent letter download
LCFF Power Point download
LCFF for Parent Training PPT in Spanish download
LCFF for Parent Training PPT in English download
Suggested Roles for DELACs - English download
Suggested Roles for DELACs -Spanish download
EL Strategies aligned to 8 state priorities download
EL Strategies aligned to 8 state priorities - Spanish download
UCP Complaint Form aligned to LCFF - English download
UCP Complaint Form aligned to LCFF - Spanish download

Local Control Funding Formula
The Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) is a new school finance system.  Schools no longer receive funding through the Economic Impact Aid for English learners.  There are many details to the new LCFF that not been determined and will be developed through regulations, template and rubrics to be adopted by the State Board of Education.  We will continue to add  new information and documents to this posting as they become available.  There is a need to ask questions, and be informed about this significant change in school funding in order to protect and advocate for "increased program and services" for English learners as required by the state statue. 
Californians Together Input to SBE on LCFF download
CDE and SBE Implementation Letter download
ACSA,CASBO, CSBA Letter download
FAQs on LCFF and EIA Carryover download
ACLU LCFF Information Handout download
LCFF Coalition Press Release download
LCFF Coalition Letter to Supt. download
LCFF Coalition Letter to SBE 8/13 download

NEW PUBLICATION "Raise Your Voice on Behalf of English Learners: The English Learners and Common Core Advocacy Toolkit
Californians Together views the advent of the Common Core Standards as an opportunity to strengthen the schooling of English Learners. We also recognize that any reform that increases rigor and does not address how English Learners will be supported to master that rigor can exacerbate the barriers and achievement gaps that have characterized the education of English Learners for too long.

To ensure that the Common Core Standards are implemented in a way that fully includes English Learners and that meets their unique language development and access needs, we have published "Raise Your Voices for English Learners: The English Learners and Common Core Advocacy Toolkit". This Advocacy Toolkit has prepared talking points for use by educators, policy makers, parents and community members in dialogues at the local, district and state levels - raising concerns, pushing for the supports needed to realize the Common Core for English learners, and advancing the vision of English Learner education that the Common Core can make possible.

The Toolkit includes:
  • Background paper on the opportunities and challenges that the Common Core Standards present for curriculum, instruction and assessment of English Learners
  • Talking points for policy makers, school site, district and count level educators to insert the needs of English Learners in Common Core Standards dialogues
  • A palm card with key issues to be raised that can support the needs of ELs in any Common Core conversation
  • Power point presentation to address the needs of English Learners which implementing the Common Core Standards
  • A CD containing the PDFs of all the documents in the kit plus two resource articles
Order Form download
Background Paper download
Talking Points for Policy Makers and Community Members download
Palm Card download
Talking Points for Educators download

California State Board of Education Unanimously Adopts New ELD Standards
On November 7, 2012 the California State Board of Education unanimously adopted the newly revised, updated and aligned English Language Development (ELD) Standards.  The new ELD Standards are aligned to the English Language Arts Common Standards.  They will serve multiple purposed: to inform instruction for English language development, to help scaffold content instruction, to support the development of the new English Language Arts/English Language Development Curriculum Framework and to inform the development of a new English language proficiency exam. Here is the link to the new ELD Standards:

This effort was led by the tremendous leadership of Dr. Karen Cadiero Kaplan, Director of the Division of English Learner Services and closely partnered with West Ed under the leadership of Dr. Robert Linquanti.  The work was informed by an incredible group of English Learner researchers and practitioners who constituted the ELD Expert Panil that worked for over six months wit the Department.  Representing Californians Togethere on the panel were Dr. Magaly Lavadenz, Director of the Center for Equity and English Learners, Loyola Marymount University, Dr. Norm Gold, CEO of Norm Gold and Associates and Former CDE Manager, and Martha Hernandez from the Ventura County Office of Education.

At the State Board of Education hearing on Nov. 7, 2012, many people testified in support of the adoption fo the standards.  The Board heard from Superintendents Linda Kaminsky, Azusa Unfied School Districts and Jan Perry, Luther Burbank Unified School District.  Representatives from our member and ally organizations who testified in support were CABE, MALDEF, Public Advocates, ACSA, CSBA, Caludia Lockwood, retired educator from a County Office of Education and Martha Zaragoza Diaz representing CABE and Californians Together. 

Our future work is to make sure that these new ELD Standards are incorporated into any professional development and implementation plans for the Common Core Standards to help define access for English learners to the new standards. 

Two Important Californians Together Sponsored Bills Signed by the Governor
We are thrilled to announce that both of the Californians Together bills were signed by the Governor.  We are now 4 for 4 in the last two legislative sessions.  Our next step is to collaborate with the California Department of Education to implement these bills. 

AB 2193 (Lara) - Long Term English Learners - Californians Together raised the profile of Long Term English Learners (LTELs) statewide and nationally through our research and policy document, Reparable Harm.  This bill will create a statewide definition and reporting procedure for LTELs and students at-risk of becoming LTELs.  California is the first state in the nation to have a consistent statewide definition to make these students visible and to catch students early along their educational journey. 

AB 1719 (Fuentes) - Instructional Materials Aligned to New ELD Standards and the ELA Common Core - This bill builds upon our legislation from the last legislative session to  revise, update and align ELD standards to the ELA Common Core.  AB 1719 now requires the California Department of Education to create a list of supplemental materials aligned to the new ELD standards for purchase by schools and districts. 

Read more about this two bills and other important English learner legislation signed by the Governor.  For the full text on any of these bills go to  These bills  became law in January 2013. 
English Learner Legislation download

“Secondary School Courses Designed to Address the Language Needs and Academic Gaps of Long TermEnglish Learners”

by Laurie Olsen, Ph.D.

Well over half of the secondaryschool English Learners in California are Long Term English Learners –struggling academically and stuck in progressing towards English proficiency despite six or more years in U.S. schools. Many secondary schools and districts, feeling the urgency of meeting the needs of these Long Term English Learners, are attempting to modify curriculumor create new courses that address the unique language and academic gaps ofthese students.  Most are doing so without guidance, without a clear sense of how best to design these classes, and making do with whatever curricular resources they happen to have or hear about. Now, a new publication, “Secondary School Courses Designed to Address the Language Needs and Academic Gaps of Long Term English Learners”, culls thelessons learned from districts throughout the state and provides needed guidance for the field.  
Order Form download
Secondary School Course Designed to Address the Language Needs and Academic Gaps of Long Term Englis download

California Poised to Spotlight ELLs Stalled in Schools Article from Education Week, September 19, 2012
By LesliA. Maxwell

California is poised to become the first state to unmask the extent to which English-language learners languish in public schools for years without ever reaching fluency.

Under a measure that received broad, bipartisan support from the legislature, the state education department would be required to break out and report data annually on long-term English-learners—tens of thousands statewide—for every school and district. The measure would also create a common, statewide definition for long-term ELL students. Students at risk of becoming long-term ELLs would also be flagged.

The legislation is awaiting action from Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, who has untilSept. 28 to decide whether to sign the bill (more)

New Policy Brief: Essential Elements of Effective Practices for English Learners
Just Released:  New Policy Brief on Essential Elements of Effective Practices for English Learners, Drs. Magaly Lavadenz and Elvira Armas, Center for Equity for English Learners (CEEL) and Karen Cadiero Kaplan, Center for Equity and Biliteracy Education Research (CEBER) San Diego State University

In response to the negative impact on English Learners from over 10 years of "drill and kill", narrowly focused reading and math curricula and limited access to social science, science and the arts, Californians Together has issued a policy brief to delineate research-based teaching practices with policy recommendations for accelerating the language development and academic growth of English Learners.
Policy Brief download
Press Release download
media advisory download

NABE Ensdorses The State Seal of Biliteracy
The National Association for Bilingual Education (NABE) passed a formal resolution supporting and endorsing the State Seal of Biliteracy.  At the February NABE Conference in Dallas, Californians Together was recognized for the development of the State Seal of Biliteracy.  Several other states are beginning to discuss the possibility of implementing a state seal. 
NABE Resolution download

State Seal of Biliteracy Website LIVE!!!
Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson, sent a letter to all superintendents in the state of California outlining the process for applying  for the State Seal of Biliteracy for this June's graduates.  The link to the website is  Allow 3-6 weeks after the date the California Department of Education receives your Insignia Request Form to receive the State Seals for placement on the diplomas and transcripts of your seniors.  Thousands of student will be recognized this year for their multilingual talents. 

Emergence of Long Term English Learners in the Elementary School Years - Data Request
In the recent research publication, Reparable Harm:  Fulfilling the Upkept Promise of Educational Opportunity for California's Long Term English Learners, we shared data from 40 school districts on the Long Term English Learner population in secondary schools.  As a follow-up, we are seeking data on the emergence of Long Term English Learners in the elementary school years.  If you are interested and able to participate in this effort, please fill out the form (below) by February 14, 2012 and email or fax back to:

Shelly Spiegel-Coleman
562-436-1822 (fax)

All data will be aggregated and the names of the districts providing the data will be kept confidential. 
Elementary LTEL Data Survey download

Governor Signs Two Sponsored Bills: AB 815 (Brownley) State Seal of Biliteracy and AB 124 (Fuentes) ELD
California Seal of Biliteracy - The First in the Nation

OnOctober 8, 2011, Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 815 (Brownley) creating theState Seal of Biliteracy making California the first state in the nation tohonor high school seniors who are proficient in English and one or more languages.  Californians Together hasworked for two years with schools districts across the state to develop localSeal of Biliteracy programs.  To date 64schools, districts and county offices of education have formally adopted a Sealof Biliteracy program.  Last June over6,000 students were awarded the Seal and marched at graduation with amedallion, stole or cord indicating their achievement in multiple languages.
TheCalifornia Department of Education (CDE) is in the process of implementing AB 815,  the State Seal of Biliteracy.It will be available for this June’s graduates.  With the support of Superintendent of PublicInstruction, Tom Torklakson, a special design for the State Seal has beencommissioned.   It will be aself-adhesive seal that can be affixed to a student’s diploma ortranscript.  Information on how to request the newly designed seal for 2012 willbe forthcoming in a letter to the field and a new CDE Web page to be postedsoon at:

Please read the text of thelegislation (attachment below), which contains all of the criteria for eligibility by clicking here. You may contact the CDE by email at: this program.

Revising, Updating and Aligning the English Language Development Standards (ELD) to California's English Language Arts (ELA) Standards

AB 124 (Fuentes) became law this month.  The California Department of Education has the responsibility for revising, updating and aligning the current ELD Standards to the ELA Common Core Standards by grade level.  Two steps have begun that will involve the field in this important work.  The Department will conduct four focus groups in different areas of the state to receive input from the field as to what would be most helpful for students and teachers in these new standards.  They have released an application for interested educators to complete in order to participate in the focus groups.  This information is contained on this website.  The law requires that the Department appoint an Expert Panel to consult on the development of the new standards.  An additional application will be made available for appointment to this panel.  Consult the website for updates on this critical work.
List of Districts Implementing the Seal of Bliteracy download
AB 815 Text download
AB 124 Text download

DVD Announcement
Californians Together Announces the Release of a New Film
“The Seal of Biliteracy – Celebrating Students of the 21st Century”

What does it mean to be a student of the 21st century? High school seniors graduating in this global era need to have skills to be able to communicate across national borders and languages. They need to be prepared to enter into the global world that they will inherit upon graduation. Being proficient in English and one or more other world languages is a strong indicator that they are not only college and career ready but prepared to contribute to the prosperity of their local community, and our diverse state and nation as bilingual professionals, social service providers, and international diplomats.

The film, The Seal of Biliteracy – Celebrating Students of the 21st Century, presents the journey and voices of three students:Richard Robles, Sierra Vista High School graduate from Baldwin Park Unified School District, You Li and Elizabeth Paiva, graduates from Modesto City Schools who have all earned the Seal of Biliteracy. The Seal of Biliteracy is a seal affixed to the transcript or diploma of a graduating senior who has meet internationally benchmarked criteria to demonstrate proficiency in English and one or more world languages. The goal is biliteracy at a high level for graduating high schools seniors.

For further information about implementing the Seal of Biliteracy, purchasing the DVD or viewing it on Facebook, YouTube or our website,, contact:

Californians Together
525 E. 7th St.
Long Beach, CA 90803
DVD Order Form download
DVD Announcement and Description download

Seal of Biiteracy Medallions and Seals Available
Seal of Bliteracy Medallions are available to be awarded for graduating high school seniors  meeting the district criteria for the Seal of Biliteracy.  In addition, the self-adhesive seals that can be affixed to diplomas, certificates and/or transcripts are also available.  Feel free to download the order forms for one or both of these items and place your orders. 
Seal of Biliteracy Stickers Order Form download
Seal of Biliteracy Medallions Order Form download

Announcing New Publications
Californians Together is pleased to announce the availability of exciting research-based publications and tools to help develop and improve policy and practice for school and district reform targeting English learners. We are grateful to the staff and talent from California Tomorrow that has trusted us to distribute their materials to keep their visions for equity in our schools alive.
Californians Together Publications download

Speaking in Tongues
At a time when 31 states have passed “English Only” laws, four pioneering families put their children in public schools where, from the first day of kindergarten, their teachers speak mostly Chinese or Spanish.  "Speaking in Tongues"  follows four diverse kids on a journey to become bilingual. This charming story in an informative and moving video will challenge you to rethink the skills that Americans need in the 21st century.  This is a must resource for schools wishing to begin and support current Dual Immersion Programs. 

Speaking in Tongues Trailer

Video Extras

Educator's Study Guide

Long Term English Learner Articles in ACSA Leadership Magazine
The November/December 2010 edition of Leadership published by the Association of California School Administrators contains two wonderful article about the reseach and district efforts to address the language and academic needs specific to long term English learners.  The research article is written by Dr. Laurie Olsen, author of Reparable Harm, and the district perspective is written by Jennifer Robles, director of Bilingual Education Programs, Ventura Unified School District.  These two articles are posted with permission of Leadership magazine, published by the Association of California School Administrators. 
Changing Course for Long Term English Learners download
Participatory Leadership for English Learner Success download

New Seal of Biliteracy Information Booklet
This the second edition of our Seal of Biliteracy Information and Implementation Booklet.  We hope you find this updated booklet helpful when planning to adopt and implement the Seal of Biliteracy and pathway awards. 
Sea of Biliteracy Implementation and Informationn Booklet download

English Learners and the Common Core Standards
In California we need to align our current English Language Develop standards to the approved Common Core Standards if we are to give our teachers and districts the additional support to build the staircase for English learners to the grade level Common Core Standards.
Letter to SBE on Common Core download
Testimony to SBE on Common Core download

Seal of Biliteracy Resouces for Implementation
The resources listed below are available for anyone working on establishing a Seal of Biliteracy recognition program for their school district or school.  Feel free to use any of the samples as a resource for your work.  You can order your Seal of Biliteracy Medallions or Self Adhesive Seals for the diplomas or transcripts by downloading the order forms.  In addition, please submit any materials that are developed in your district to
Seal of Biliteracy Stickers Order Form download
Seal of Biliteracy Medallions Order Form download
List of Seal of Biilteracy Districts/Schools/County Offices download

Board Policies, Resolutions and Support
To involve all stakeholders in establishing the Seal of Biliteracy recognition program, districts, organizations and community organizations have demonstrated their support by developing new board policy, regulations, resolutions and letters.  Samples are posted below. 
Azusa Unified School District download
Californian Federation of Teachers Resolution download
Colton Joint Unified School District download
California School Boards Association Sample Board Regulations download
California School Board Assocation Sample Board Policy download
El Segundo Unified School District download
Pasadena Unified School District download
Sample Board Resolution download
San Francisco Unified School District download
Sweetwater Union HIgh School District download
Ventura Unified School District download
CTA Letter of Support download
Ceres Unified School District Board Policy download
Ceres Unified School District Board Regulations download
CSU Strategic Language Initiative Support Letter download
Orange County Business Council Support Letter download
Riverbank Unified School District download
Windsor USD Resolution download
Silver Valley USD Resolution download
Lemon Grove School District Policy download
Anaheim City School District polciy download
Sonoma Valley USD Resoulution download
San Diego Unified Policy download
San Diego Unified Board Resolution download
Mt. Diable Board Policy download
Pajaro Valley Unified School District Board Resolution download
NABE Resolution download
Albany School District Board Policy download
Albany School District Board Regulations download

Award Criteria
Each district/school is able to set their own criteria for awarding the Pathway Awards and the Seal of Biliteracy.  Californians Together has included sample criteria at all levels of recognition in their Seal of Biliteracy booklet.  Below are criteria that some districts are currently using. 
Albuquerque Public Schools District download
Azusa Unified School District download
Eastside Union High School District download
Orange County Educational Arts Academy Pathway Awards Criteria download
OCEAA 6 Point Writing Scale download
OCEAA Writing Prompt download
OCEAA FLSOEM Exam Questions download
Rowland Unified School District download
San Jose Unified School District download
Pathway Award Writing Prompts download
Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District download
Pajaro Valley Unified School District download
Windsor USD award criteria download
Los Angeles Unified School District Reference Guide download
Los Angeles Unified SD Flyer download
Anaheim City SD Criteria download
Fresno USD Criteria download
San Diego Unifed Elementary Biliteracy Award download
San Diego Unified Elementary Service Award download
San Diego Unified Middle School Attainment Award download
San Diego Unified Middle School Pursuit Award download
San Diego Unfied High School Seal of Biliteracy download
Marshall Dual Language 5th Grade Criteria download

Application for the Seal of Biliteracy
Below are sample student applications.  We encourage districts to have students apply for this recognition so that they understand the criteria, take an affirmative action to receive this recognition and demonstrate their value of attaining a high decree of biliteracy. 
Baldwin Park School District Application download
Colton Joint Unified School District Application download
Orange County Educatonal Arts Academy Biliteracy Application download
Orange County Educatonal Arts Academy Pursuit of Biliteracy Application download
San Joe Unified School District Pathway Award Application download
San Jose Unified School District Seal Application download
Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District Application download
Stanislaus County Office of Education Application download
Stanislaus County Office of Education Student Language Biography download
Pasadena Unified SD Application download
Pasadena USD Student Letter download

Sample Awards and Certificates
You'll see that districts are designing their awards and certificates.  Some take the shape of medallions, stoles or cords to be worn at graduation.  We are especially excited about the partnership with Velasquez Press and the medallion they have designed and offer to new Seal of Biliteracy districts and program. 
Azusa and Baldwin Park School Districts download
Californians Together download
Glendale Unified School Distict Certificate download
Glendale Unified School Distict Plaque download
Glendale Unified School Distict Medallions download
San Jose Unified School District Service Award download
San Jose Unified School District Participation Award download
San Jose Unified School District Competency Award download
Sweetwater Union High School District award download
Sweetwater Union High School District Stole download
Velasquez Press Medallion download
Ceres Unified School District Design download
San Francisco USD Medallion download
Santa Clara COE Certificate download
Almaden Elementary Award - San Jose USD download
Santa Ana USD Medallion download

Seal of Biliteracy Brochures
Below are samples of brochures that districts and schools have developed to publicize their Seal of Biliteracy Program. 
Baldwin Park School District download
Colton School District download
San Jose Unified School District download
Stanislaus County Office of Education download
Ventura Unified School District download
Whittier Union High School District download
Santa Clara County Office of Education download
Pasadena Unifed School District download
Anaheim Union HSD Brochure download
Santa Clara County Office of Ed Brochure download
San Benito Seal Brochure download
Covina Valley School District Brochure Front download
Covina Valley School District Brochure Inside download

In the News
The attachments below are some of the local press that districts have received for the adoption and awarding of their Seal of Biliteracy
ACSA Newsletter download
Ceres School District download
Ventura Unified School District article download
CSBA Policies in Review 3-09 download
Anaheim Union HSD Adopts Seal of Biliteracy download
Fullerton Observer download
Supt. O'Connell Honors Seal Districts download
San Jose Chamber of Commerce Article download
Pajaro Valley USD download
Pajaro Valley USD download
Santa Cruz School District download
Ed Cal Article - ACSA download
Salinas Union High School District download
UTLA Article download
La Opinion - LAUSD download
Santa Clara County Office of Ed News Release on Awardees download
Sweetwater Union High School District Biliteracy Article download
ACSA Ed Cal Article download
ETS Innovations Magazine Seal of Biliteracy Article download
NABE Perspective Magazine Seal of Biliteracy Article download
Los Alamitos USD Seal of Biliteracy Press Release download

Systemic issues in California’s public education have created a majority of high school English Learners who despite many years in our schools are still not English proficient and have developed major academic deficits, according to a recent study authored by Californians Together and funded by the California Community Foundation.

The report, Reparable Harm: Fulfilling the Unkept Promise of Educational Opportunity for California’s Long Term English Learners, calls upon state policymakers and leaders to provide solutions and outlines basic principles and promising approaches for school districts to meet the needs of English Learners more effectively.
Executive Summary download
Press Release download
Reparable Harm Order Form download
LA Times Article download
Ed Week Article download
Reparable Harm Power Point download
The Complete Report download
Spanish Executive Summary download

ESEA Reauthorization Recommendations
Californians Together submitted the attached recommendations for the reauthorization of Elementary and Secondary Education Act to both the House Education and Labor Committee and the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.  These recommendations focus on what the reauthorization should address for improving schools for English learners.  $0
ESEA Reauthorization Recommendations download

Californians Together Provides Input to Draft Federal Guideline for Race to the Top, School Improvement Grants, State Consortia Developing High Quality Assessments and NAEP Uniform Guideline for Test
Secretary Duncan and the U. S. Department of Education released guidelines for the expenditure of billions of dollars to reform schools and districts to shrink the achievement gap and turn around low performing schools.  Californians Together suggests that to reform the nation's schools and particularly California's schools, the new initiatives need to focus on English learners.  Attached is the input provided to the U. S. Department of Education on the Race to the Top, School Improvement Grant guidelines, NAEP Uniform Guidelines for Testing ELs and testimony given at a hearing on state consortia developing and implementing high quality assessments aligned to the new common core standards.  Dr. Magaly Lavadenz from Loyola University and Dr. Barbara Flores appeared before a panel to present our recommendations in Denver, December 2, 2010.
Comments on Race to the Top download
Final Comment on School Improvement Grant Regulations download
Input on NAEP Uniform Testing Guidelins for ELs download
Race to the Top Assessment Program Public Hearing Testimony download

Californians Together Announces the Seal of Bilitereacy
The Seal of Biliteracy is an award given by a school, school district or county office of education in recognition of students who have studied and attained proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation.  Appearing on the transcript of the graduating senior, the Seal of Biliteracy is   a statement of accomplishment for future employers and for college admissions.

We are looking for school districts and schools that want to implement the Seal of Biliteracy Program.  The attached brochure gives direction and support for establishing this program.  Contact our office for more information 562-983-1333.

The Seal download
CSBA Sample Board Policy download
CSBA Sample Administrative Regulations download
Press Release Announcing Seal of Biliteracy download
ACSA Support for Seal of Biliteracy download
Seal of Bilteracy Booklet download

2008 Reading/Language Arts Adoption Recommendations
During the spring and summer of 2008 representatives of the Californians Together attended two California Department of Education trainings for the Instructional Materials Advisory Panel members and had over seventeen experts observe the textbook deliberations. Each of the observers learned much about the process and the materials and was impressed with the commitment of the panel members, the commissioners and staff. More importantly, the observers walked away with a better understanding of the adoption process, and the challenge of selecting instructional materials that best serve the instructional needs of all students, including English learners.

Based upon our observations of the work of the advisory panels, Californians Together offers the attached findings on the process, criteria and content of the materials with recommendations.
Supplanting versus Supplementing - Categorical Program Integrity
Twelve organizations are urging the State Superintendent of Instruction and the President of the State Board of Education to clarify the intent of categorical funds.  State law and court cases lay the legal foundation for guaranteeing that categorical funds are to supplement the base program and not supplant the services guaranteed to English learners.  The following letter should be shared with all stakeholders.
Letter to Supt. O'Connell download

California English Learners State and Federal Accountability Systems Survey
We are interested in knowing how the implementation of No Child Left Behind and state accountability measures for schools that are identified as low-achieving, are placed in Program Improvement Status, or in a High Priority Schools Grant Program may be impacting English Learners and English Learner programs. Please take a moment to complete one of our on-line surveys listed below. Please share this with colleagues who could help provide us with this information. Thank you for your valuable input.




New Report: Successful Bilingual Schools: Six Effective Programs in California
Norm Gold Associates and the San Diego County Office of Education
This report profiles successful bilingual education programs at six schools in San Diego, Los Angeles, and Ventura, California. It was designed to show that bilingual schools are capable of providing opportunities for students to achieve and sustain high levels of academic excellence even when faced with challenges such as poverty and a lack of students' English proficiency upon entering school.
Final Report download

Policy Statement for Reclassification of English Language Learners
This document provides rationale, a position and criteria for guidelines for state reclassification criteria.
Californians Together Reclassification Policy Paper download

Reclassification of English Learners, Dr. Jim Grissom, College of Education, Arizona State University, Education Policy Analysis Archives
A report published by the Education Policy Analysis Archives and authored by James Grissom of the California Department of Education challenges the assumption that improvements in the reclassfication rate and academic achievement of English learners has taken place since the passage of Prop. 227. The report is based on statewide data from three different cohorts tracked across four years. Based on the data, Grissom concludes that Prop. 227 has had no effect on reclassfication rates or test scores. To read the full report, visit
Grissom Reclassification Study download

Premature Identification of IFEPs
Not until significant numbers of CELDT tests were administered to new students for initial assessment did the problem of prematurely identifying IFEPs materialize.  This document makes recommendations for modifying aspects of the CELDT to produce accurate language proficiency designation. 
Policy Paper to Improve CELDT Language Proficiency Designation download

English Learners in California Schools: Unequal Resources, Unequal Outcomes
This article reviews the conditions of schools for California’s English learners and argues that there are seven aspects of schooling of ELs where students receive an education that is demonstrably inferior to that of English speakers.
Inferior Resources for Educating English Learners download

National and State Issues Effecting the Education of English Learners. Over 151,000 English Learners Foreclosed From State and Federal Programs and Resources
These two reports document policies promulgated by the California State Board of Education and legislature that were hostile to the continuation and support of bilingual programs and appropriate resources for all services to English learners.
EL National and State Issues download
ELs Foreclosed from State and Federal Services download

Equity, Achievement and Diversity - Powerpoint Presentation for Latino Legislative Caucus Retreat
Dr. Maria Quezada, CABE
This presentation calls for bold new leadership in leadership and resources for programs for English learners.
Presentation to Latino Legislative Caucus download

Position Paper on California English Language Development Test (CELDT) – The Need for and Value of CELDT
This document underscores the need for a statewide English Language Proficiency test and makes recommendation to improve content and administration of the CELDT.
Californians Together CELDT position paper download

Three Years of Policy Erosion for English Learners 1998-2001
Since the passage of Proposition 227 new education policy has affected every aspect of schooling for English learners.  This is a brief chronology, by category, of the challenges and barriers to implementing an equitable and accessible education for English learners.                                                                                                                                  
Chronology of Challenges and Barriers to Education for ELs download

The Redesignation Dilemma: Challenges and Choices in Fostering Meaningful Accountability for English Learners
Dr. Robert Linquanti,  Policy Report, UC Linguistic Minority Research Institute, Volume 10, Number 4, Summer 2001. 
This report documents the important role of the reclassification criteria as a monitoring tool for services to English learners.  
Reclassification and Monitoring EL Programs download

Bilingual Schools Make Exceptional Gains on the State's Academic Performance Index (API)
Dr. Norm Gold, Californians Together
This document reports that 63 schools with bilingual education programs did better on tests of academic achievement in English than over 1,000 similar schools that provided instruction to most of their students only in English.
Bilingual Schools API Gains download

Schools with Large Enrollments of English Learners and Substantial Bilingual Instruction are Effective in Teaching English
Dr. Norm Gold, Californians Together
A review of Spring 2000 Math and Reading SA -9 data from ten elementary schools with large enrollments of English learners (ELs)
Bilingual Instruction Effective in Teaching English download