Preparation and Development of Teachers
Serving English-Language Learners
This chapter reviews the current knowledge base regarding the preparation and professional development of teachers of English-language learners.
State Of Knowledge
We begin our review of the state of knowledge in this area with a brief overview of studies investigating the preparation and development of teachers serving English-language learners. We then summarize the evolution of programs designed to develop teachers of these students. This is followed by a description of four innovative programs for professional development of teachers of English-language learners, highlighting recent trends in teacher preparation and development and some emerging efforts to examine the effects on teacher participants. These initiatives exemplify the current state of professional development in this field and suggest research directions outlined at the end of the chapter.
In the view of many individuals and organizations, the nation does not have enough teachers with the skills needed to serve a linguistically diverse student population. Although estimates vary on the demand and supply of teachers for English-language learners, experts state that a severe shortage exists and that institutions are not graduating bilingual and English as a second language (ESL) teachers quickly enough to overcome this shortage (Boe, 1990). Based on a
review of teacher supply and demand studies, Macias (1989, cited in Leighton et al., 1993) estimates a need for approximately 170,000 additional teachers to serve English-language learners by the year 2000. In its 1994 report on limited English proficiency, the General Accounting Office (U.S. GAO, 1994) cites the National Education Association's estimate that 175,000 additional bilingual teachers are needed. The National Center for Education Statistics (1993:125) Schools and Staffing Survey reveals that during the 1990-91 school year, 37 percent of school administrators who had vacancies in ESL or bilingual education found them "very difficult or impossible to fill." A 1990 California State Department of Education report cited the need for approximately 20,000 ESL and bilingual teachers; the state also reported that more than half of its existing bilingual staff was teaching under waivers (National Forum, 1990). A national survey of teacher placement officers ranked bilingual education as the field with the highest degree of teacher shortage and with the highest demand (Association for School, College, and University Staffing, 1990, cited in Milk et al., 1992).
There are large and increasing numbers of English-language learners and few teachers specially trained to work with them. A widely held assumption is that minority individuals may be especially effective as teachers for these students given similarities in linguistic and cultural background. However, supply and demand studies reveal that as "the student population becomes more culturally heterogeneous, the teaching force is expected to become increasingly homogeneous" (Villegas et al., 1995:6). The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education 1994 report on the multicultural status of today's teaching workforce, Teacher Education Pipeline III (AACTE, 1994), states that while teacher education enrollment has increased by approximately 10 percent since 1989, the racial/ethnic balance of the workforce has not been significantly affected. Only about 14 percent of current public and private school teachers are members of a non-Caucasian racial/ethnic group. Conversely, K-12 minority enrollment has exceeded 31 percent and continues to climb steadily. In teacher education, 85 percent of enrolled students are white, while only about 12 percent are members of a minority group. Pipeline studies reveal that the number of minority teachers is expected to fall to 6 percent by the year 2000 (Spellman, 1988, cited in Hill et al., 1993).
Student demographic projections, supply and demand studies, and analyses of the type of preparation received by teachers serving English-language learners (see Chapter 1) lead to several conclusions. Researchers cite a need to recruit more teachers and provide high-quality development experiences to both preservice and inservice teachers serving these students, particularly given the continuing rapid increase in the number of such students. Many educators and advocates further conclude that the shortage of minority teachers signals a need to increase the pool of professionally trained minority teachers who can serve as role models and cultural brokers for a student population that is growing more and more linguistically and culturally diverse (Villegas et al., 1995; Irvine, 1992).
Those same researchers and advocates who stress the need for more teachers of color, however, also emphasize the need to prepare all those entering, and already working in, the teaching professionregardless of backgroundto meet the linguistic and subject matter needs of students of limited English proficiency (Villegas et al., 1995; Milk et al., 1992; National Forum, 1990).
While various studies indicate the need for a ''well-trained" teaching workforce for English-language learners, we know less about how best to train these teachers. The field of teacher preparation and professional development for those serving English-language learners is relatively new (Garcia, 1990), and research in this area is rather sparse (Garcia, 1991; Grant and Secada, 1990; Grant, 1991; Irvine, 1992; National Clearinghouse for Bilingual Education, 1987/88; Romero, 1990; Villegas et al., 1995; Zeichner, 1992; Zeicher and Hoeft, 1996). However, most teacher preparation (preservice) and professional development (inservice) programs are based on a growing body of knowledge regarding attributes of effective teaching for English-language learners (Milk et al., 1992; Collier, 1985; Garcia, 1990; Grant, 1991). This knowledge, much of it reviewed in earlier chapters, comes from various sources, including basic, theoretical, and school-based research and professional judgments about effective practice. However, empirical research and evidence of the effectiveness of staff preparation and development programs based on these principles is needed (Minaya-Rowe, 1990). Empirical research and evidence of the relationship between proposed attributes of effective teaching and student learning is only slowly emerging, and this also is an area in need of further research (Grant and Secada, 1990).
The Evolution of Programs to Develop Teachers of English-Language
Learners Certification Standards and Guidelines
Over the years, several organizations, such as the Center for Applied Linguistics (1974), Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (1975), the National Association for Bilingual Education (1992), and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (1996) have developed guidelines and certification standards for teachers who work in ESL and bilingual programs. These standards build on basic program standards, such as those outlined by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (1989) and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. In 1984, the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification developed standards for bilingual and ESL teachers based on the guidelines of the Center for Applied Linguistics and Teachers of English for Speakers of Other Languages. These standards have been the most widely distributed and have served as the corner-stone of many teacher-preparation programs in the United States (Garcia, 1990). They have also served as a general guide for state certification. In general, the various guidelines and standards include proficiency in written and oral forms of two languages and skills in developing students' language abilities. Proposed
English as a New Language Standards (National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, 1996:13-14) also call for "preparing for student learning through knowledge of students, language development, culture, and subject matter; advancing student learning through the use of approaches that allow for meaningful learning, the provision of multiple paths to knowledge, the selection, adaptation and use of rich instructional resources, creation of rich community of learning; use of a variety of assessment methods to obtain useful information; and supporting student learning through reflective practice, linkages with families, and professional leadership."
Inservice Staff Development
Traditional approaches to staff development for teachers of English-language learners, described by Arawak (1986), followed a typical pattern (cited in Romero, 1990). Staff development often began with an assessment of needs done by either an outsider or the project director. In some cases, needs were determined without input from teachers. A second step involved the development of incentives to encourage teacher attendance at a workshop or symposium. Follow-up staff development was rare, leaving application of the newly learned information to the teachers who had participated in the workshop or symposium. At times, evaluation was built into the staff development program, but rarely was it used to improve the training process. The traditional development programs often centered on transmitting knowledge about attributes and competencies and focused less on the "process by which teachers develop competence" (Romero, 1990:487).
Evolution of Programs
In his review of the evolution of professional development for bilingual and ESL teachers, Milk (1991:275) contends that the initial stage in the development of bilingual teacher preparationidentifying competencieswas an "important first step toward development of state teacher certification in bilingual education as well as institutionalization of bilingual teacher preparation programs within universities." Milk and others state, however, that in recent years, programs for teacher preparation and development have expanded their focus beyond skills-based, competency-driven curriculum to incorporate innovative methods for enhancing teacher learning. These recent trends in the preparation and ongoing professional development of teachers of English-language learners draw on the growing research on effective staff development in general (e.g., Joyce and Showers, 1982, cited in Calderon, 1994; Little, 1993; Lieberman, 1995; McLaughlin and Oberman, 1996). Contemporary teacher preparation and development efforts stress an inquiry-based approach to teacher learning, which places the teacher in a more active role in the professional development process. Teacher reflection
on practice is emphasized, along with collaboration with colleagues in "learning communities." Teacher learning communities give teachers opportunities to learn from one anotherto share ideas, consult one another, and critically analyze assumptions about teaching and student learning (Little, 1993). This type of "teacher-as-learner" approach frequently involves teachers working together as peer coaches or in collaborative teams to observe one another and offer insights and feedback (Romero, 1990; Milk, 1991; Milk et al., 1992; Calderon, 1994). In addition, teachers are often placed in the role of action researchers to investigate issues affecting their students within the classroom and school contexts. More contemporary professional development methods also underscore ongoing teacher learning, which involves follow-up and continuous feedback from trainers and colleagues (i.e., peer coaches) (Darling-Hammond and McLaughlin, 1995).
Other recent trends include requirements that all those entering or already in the profession, including mainstream, bilingual, and ESL teachers, receive preparation to serve English-language learners (Milk, 1991; Milk et al., 1992). In addition, a growing number of professional development initiatives are targeting minority populations to increase the pool of bilingual teachers. These and other innovative programs focus on recruiting paraprofessionals and providing them with career ladders to receive their credentials.
However, despite advances in some programs, the research on staff development and preservice programs concludes that there is a marked mismatch between what we know about effective professional development and what is actually available to most teachers. Although there has been a paradigm shift in theoretical approaches to professional development, these approaches are not well established in practice. For example, most inservice professional development continues to take the form of short-term, superficial workshops that expose teachers to various concepts without providing the depth of treatment or connection to practice necessary for lasting effects.
Professional Development for Teachers of English-Language Learners:
A Description of Four Programs
This section describes a sample of four professional development programs that exemplify the recent trends in professional development and teacher preparation discussed above. Like many teacher development programs across the country, the programs are based on theories of effective instruction from basic, school-based, and program-based research and expert judgment (e.g., Carter and Chatfield, 1986; Pease-Alvarez et al., 1991; Tikunoff, 1983; Villegas, 1991) that have contributed to the enumeration of competencies and attributes characterizing effective teachers of English-language learners (Collier, 1985). Three of the programs are described at length in Leighton et al. (1995) and were selected on the basis of attributes of best practice, nomination by experts, telephone interviews, document reviews, and site visits. A fourththe California Cross-Cultural
Language and Academic Development Programwas selected because of its state sponsorship and its extensive use in a state with the largest number of English-language learners in the nation.
Cooperative Learning in Bilingual Settings: Johns Hopkins University's
Center for Research in Educating Students Placed at Risk (CRESPAR)
Cooperative Learning in Bilingual Settings is a CRESPAR-sponsored inservice program operating in schools across the Ysleta and El Paso, Texas, school districts. From 1988 to 1993, the program operated as a 5-year experimental project for seven elementary schools in the Ysleta School District. In 1992, it was incorporated into a two-way bilingual project in the El Paso school district. This joint venture is the focus of a new research project that will run from 1994 to 1999 (Calderon, 1994). Coordinated with the University of Texas at El Paso for the first 5 years, the program is now solely sponsored by CRESPAR under the direction of Margarita Calderon, one of the program's founders, in collaboration with Robert Slavin and other researchers at The Johns Hopkins University.
Teachers participating in the Cooperative Learning in Bilingual Settings program receive intensive professional development in the Cooperative Integrated Reading and Composition (CIRC) instructional model, an approach developed by researchers at Johns Hopkins to promote students' acquisition of literacy in English and Spanish.1 The model focuses on effective practices in reading, writing, and language arts. Through structured lessons with a basal reader, students actively discuss the content of stories, learn new vocabulary, analyze the story's literary aspects, and develop word recognition and spelling skills. The model consists of a sequence of cooperative, independent, teacher-directed, and partner learning strategies that can take 2 to 6 weeks to implement. Bilingual CIRC (BCIRC), based on the original model, integrates the principles of first- and second- language acquisition and literacy and cognitive development (Calderon, 1994:3) Students in BCIRC participate in activities similar to those of monolingual CIRC students; however, more time is spent on interactive language development and writing (Leighton et al., 1995).
In primary-language classrooms in Ysleta, 15 teachers with a wide range of experience participated in the first 5-year project. This was designed as an experimental project, and novice and veteran skilled and struggling teachers were recruited to test the rigor of the training approach. Teachers used CIRC in a transitional bilingual program with a goal of facilitating English-language acquisition while supporting the development of Spanish literacy. In the newer El
1For more extensive descriptions of this and the next two programs discussed in this section, see Leighton et al. (1995).
Paso two-way bilingual project, 24 teachers (mainstream and bilingual) in two elementary schools (12 from each school) volunteered to participate. Classes at each grade level include approximately 15 Spanish-speaking and 15 English-speaking students. Each class is staffed by two teachers, one bilingual and the other monolingual.
Teachers in the two school districts received slightly different professional development. Ysleta teachers attended weekly after-school staff development sessions with project leaders during the project's first year. Sessions involved project staff modeling the CIRC instructional techniques and teachers practicing these methods. El Paso school district teachers participated in 45 hours of weekly professional development activities on a variety of topics, such as team teaching, cooperative learning, multiple intelligences, and alternative assessments. About one-third of this training focused on CIRC (Leighton et al., 1995).
Comprehensive staff development for both groups centered on providing theoretical content knowledge "needed for effective transfer of [teacher] knowledge into the classroom" (Calderon, 1994:27). Teachers also worked in peer coaching teams to observe each other and share ideas. A key feature of the professional development process was teacher learning communities, in which teachers met regularly (weekly or monthly) to identify areas of interest, problems, and solutions; to coach each other; and to share knowledge and skills. Often these meetings included the presentation of research and discussions of how, if at all, new ideas from research connected to the teachers' experience could be applied to their particular needs (Leighton et al., 1995). Another essential element of staff development was project staff follow-up. Staff visited teachers' classrooms to observe, offer feedback, make videotapes for joint analysis, and offer guidance with peer coaching and the teacher learning communities process. This approach to staff developmentproviding teachers with a theoretical rationale, follow-up and feedback by trainers, structured time for teacher reflection and practice, and collaborative teacher learning teams and peer coaching to facilitate use of the newly learned skillsis based on the literature on effective staff development (e.g., Joyce et al., 1987, cited in Calderon, 1994).2
The 5-year research study of BCIRC in the Ysleta schools involved approximately
2In 1980, Calderon incorporated the Joyce et al. professional development model into a California district training project she developed for bilingual and ESL teachers, called Multi-District Trainers of Trainers. Her earlier research on this approach had examined the effects on teacher skills and the continuous use of these skills in the classroom. Her findings revealed that providing teachers with theory, practice, feedback, and peer coaching increased classroom use from 5 percent to the range of 75 to 90 percent of the time (Grant and Secada, 1990). Grant and Secada note, however, that it is unclear whether these data were drawn from the same teachers progressing through the program, or four groups of teachers were given different treatments. Grant and Secada contend that if the former is the case, it would be important to disentangle the effects of increased familiarity with the materials from those of the actual delivery model.
500 students from 12 experimental and 12 control classrooms and the 24 teachers who participated in the study. The study consisted of quantitative and qualitative approaches that examined both teacher and student effects: (1) student academic, linguistic, and social development; (2) teacher development of new teaching and collaborative skills, fidelity to the model, and creativity; (3) effective staff development processes for teachers and how these teachers constructed collegial work settings; and (4) implementation of the innovation in different school settings (Calderon, 1994). Students were matched by grade level, socioeconomic status, and academic and linguistic levels. Student effects were measured by project-developed pre-post tests. These tests, along with state standardized tests, were triangulated with attitude surveys, student portfolios, and ethnographic analyses of video recordings of students involved in cooperative groupwork. Teacher development was measured on a yearly basis through video recordings of teacher practice in the classroom and staff development sessions with colleagues. Interviews and classroom observation using systematic instruments and ethnographic guides were also used, in conjunction with teacher narratives of their professional growth and their students' achievement.
With respect to teacher development effects, the study focused on the content teachers needed to adopt, a cooperative learning philosophy, and use of the CIRC model appropriately in the classroom. It also examined the processes of teacher development and the creation of a support system for teachers adopting and implementing a new instructional philosophy and teaching system. In general, the study demonstrated gains for experimental teachers in terms of personal growth and implementation of innovative practices. The study findings confirmed that "although the comprehensive coverage of content at the teacher inservice session is vitally important, the process for renewal and follow-up support systems for collegial learning are critical. Without certain processes for preparing teachers, content rarely transfers into teachers' active teaching repertoire" (Calderon, 1994:18).
Calderon states that perhaps the greatest contribution of the study was the empirical testing of the effects of various theories of cooperative learning on students' second-language acquisition (e.g., Cummins, 1981; Cohen, 1986). Calderon (1994:7) found that cooperative learning increases the "variety of and frequency of second-language practice" and that the structured curriculum becomes a way of facilitating the processing of new information that helps students develop the native language en route to second-language development. The study further revealed that BCIRC students made greater academic gains in standardized tests during their involvement in the project than did students in the control classrooms. BCIRC students were also ready to transition into regular classrooms sooner and sustained academic success.
In the two-way CIRC project in El Paso schools, the staff development process described above has continued. In the 5-year study, research on the transfer of teacher preparation to the classroom is a major focus. The general
research questions include the following: "How do teachers construct common knowledge of what a two-way bilingual program should be?" and "How do mainstream teachers and minority teachers collaborate to share one another's talents on the construction of knowledge about their students' instructional needs?" (Calderon, 1996:6). Quantitative and qualitative data will be collected from teachers and students. Preliminary research findings reveal positive effects on student attitudes toward each other and the language they are learning (Calderon, 1994).
In addition, preliminary studies have been conducted on a "peer ethnography" segment of the teacher development process. Peer ethnography involves teachers taking the roles of peer coaches, classroom ethnographers, teacher trainers, and curriculum writers. Teachers are trained in the use of ethnographic techniques to observe and analyze their teaching practice and students' learning processes. One teacher conducts a mini-ethnography, while the other teaches and "scripts" segments of the instructional activities that occur within a 30- to 90-minute time period. Teachers then use these scripts as a tool to "step back and generate a set of questions that serve for general analysis, reflection and reorganization of time, and analysis of language status and implicit power issues in [student] participation structures" (p. 17). Preliminary evidence from the classroom ethnographies indicates that the approach draws monolingual and bilingual teachers closer together and provides "texts and contexts for teachers for self-analysis, negotiation, and problem solving" (p. 18).
The Latino Teacher Project: University of Southern California
The Latino Teacher Project was developed in 1991 in response to a shortage of bilingual Latino teachers available to teach California's growing number of language-minority students. The project taps into the underutilized paraprofessional or teaching assistant workforce in the state and structures a career ladder by which they can receive their bilingual teaching credentials (Genzuk and Hentschke, 1992). The project provides financial, social, and academic support to aspiring teachers.
The Latino Teacher Project was developed at the University of Southern California and is part of a consortium that includes the Los Angeles Unified School District, the Little Lake City School District, the Lennox School District, local teacher and teacher assistant union representatives, California State University at Dominguez Hills, California State University at Los Angeles, and Loyola Marymount University. Consortium members are part of an advisory group that shares in decision making and provides support (e.g., workshops) for participants.
Paraeducators, as they are called in this project, are recruited from three groups of applicants: (1) teaching assistants who are enrolled in undergraduate programs, (2) teaching assistants who are currently enrolled in teacher education
programs and pursuing their post-baccalaureate teaching credentials, and (3) teaching assistants in community colleges who intend to transfer to a 4-year institution. Applicants who live and work in the South Central area of Los Angeles and are fluently bilingual receive priority; participants living and working in other Los Angeles area schools are also involved. There are 50 slots currently available in the project, with another 25 slots at the intermediate and secondary school levels.
Participants in the program are involved in various staff development activities that are based on a "sociocultural, assisted performance model of professional development and create a community of learners to provide professional socialization to students enrolled" (M. Genzuk, personal communication). These activities include workshops to help participants prepare for benchmark tests and develop strategies for progressing smoothly through teacher education programs. Each university in the consortium offers workshops on varying topics, depending on the participants' needs.
Initial research on the obstacles to program completion led to measures to assist the participants in a variety of areas. For example, monetary stipends are provided to students twice a year, depending on student need, to help offset the costs of enrollment. Participant cohorts are developed to provide a support network; these cohorts often form study groups and work in the same school. The project also sponsors social gatherings for participants and their families. Finally, the project creates a network of professional support that provides academic guidance, as well as professional modeling. Each participant is assigned a mentor trained by the Los Angeles County Office of Education. At project expense, mentors, participants, and principals attend conferences together to make presentations and network with other professional educators (Leighton et al., 1995). The project director notes that to date, 100 participants have successfully attained their credentials, and that the completion rate is approximately 99 percent (M. Genzuk, personal communication).
Research thus far on the project has focused primarily on retention and participants' rates of completion of credentialing programs. One significant finding is that the participant attrition rate is extremely low2.7 percent. The project's principal investigator has also examined "departure and persistence" factors for participating teachers (M. Genzuk, personal communication). An important finding is that working as paraeducators bolsters students' persistence in completing university programs, rather than detracting from it. In addition, external studies of the project have been conducted to identify the elements and factors that have contributed to the project's success, such as district/school collaboration and community building (Joy and Bruschi, 1995, cited in Villegas et al., 1995).
In the near future, through the new Center on Meeting the Educational Needs of a Diverse Student Population, Robert Rueda plans to conduct a formal research study to investigate the nature and use of bilingual Latino paraeducators' "funds
of knowledge" in classroom settings, with focus on reading and language arts instruction. Funds of knowledge refers to the language, social norms, and other cultural and linguistic community and family resources that individuals possess (Moll et al., 1992) (see also Chapter 4). Candidates entering the Latino Teacher Project and those who have been out of school for 2 to 3 years will be the focus of the study. The major research questions are as follows (M. Genzuk, personal communication): Do Latino paraeducators have existing funds of knowledge that can serve as special resources to at-risk English-language learners in urban schools? Are the instructional interactions and activity settings they create for their students different from those created by their peers without the same background? How are these affected by the formal preparation involved in acquiring a teaching credential? The goal of the study is to address the gap in research regarding "ethnic and linguistic matching" of teachers and students. To date, Genzuk notes, there is no strong evidence that ethnic or linguistic matching is effective; questions still remain unanswered regarding how teachers' funds of knowledge can be used to improve instruction.
English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Inservice Project:
Dade County Public Schools
Of the 225,000 students in the Dade County Public Schools, 51,000 have limited English proficiency. Although a variety of languages are spoken in the Miami area, the large majority of students are Spanish speaking. In the summer of 1989, Multicultural Education Training and Advocacy informed the state education agency of its intent to sue on behalf of the language-minority students who were receiving inadequate educational services. The suit alleged that the state had failed to develop standards and guidelines for the provision of services to these students. Multicultural Education Training and Advocacy and the state reached an agreement (called the consent decree) requiring that all teachers and support personnel (e.g., counselors) who come into contact with English-language learners will be prepared to meet those students' academic needs. The consent decree has four parts: (1) identifying, assessing, and monitoring the progress of language-minority students; (2) providing these students with equal access to appropriate programming; (3) requiring teachers to obtain appropriate preparation and certification; and (4) evaluating program effectiveness (Leighton et al., 1995). To comply with the consent decree, Dade County Public Schools and other districts across the state were faced with the task of training more than 15,000 teachers.
English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) training is now required of all teachers serving English-language learners. "All" teachers include basic ESL teachers with or without experience, primary-language (other than English) teachers, and teachers of basic and nonbasic subject areas whose classrooms include English-language learners. Teachers are required to take specified courses, each
of which is assigned a certain number of "master plan points." They must acquire a certain number of points within a particular time frame according to their teaching assignment (for example, ESOL teachers have 6 years to accumulate their points). Courses are provided to teachers throughout the year to accommodate their schedules, and include Methods of Teaching ESOL, Cross-Cultural Communication and Understanding, and Testing and Evaluation of ESOL. An additional professional development opportunityattaining a masters degree in urban education with a concentration in ESOLis offered in collaboration with Florida International University.
Funded by a Title VII grant, the program accepted 33 Dade County elementary teachers and provided full tuition scholarships. Upon completion of the program, participating teachers will receive a permanent $3,000 salary increase. Project outcome data indicate that by May 1993, more than 9,000 teachers had completed the course in ESOL Issues and Strategies, and 3,000 had completed the course in Issues and Strategies for LEP Students.
In a descriptive review of the ESOL inservice project in Dade County Public Schools, Leighton et al. (1995) note that thus far, the district staff operating the professional development initiative have learned several lessons. They quickly learned that because the consent decree is a top-down mandate, teachers are often reluctant to participate in the professional development program. The staff have tried to address this lack of interest by informing teachers about the decree and the pedagogical rationale that underlies the program. In addition, teachers and district staff are concerned that the program targets too many teachers with a wide range of experiences and classroom needs. Project staff are therefore constantly trying to find ways to tailor the courses to meet the diverse needs of a large, heterogeneous group of teachers.
The University of Florida recently completed a state-wide technical assistance report evaluating Florida's ESOL staff development initiative (Harper, 1995), funded in part by a Title VII personnel development grant. For the evaluation, 126 trainers and 237 teachers were surveyed to examine their attitudes and perceptions regarding their professional development experience; 36 trainers and teachers were also interviewed. Among other questions, teachers were asked what they found most and least useful in the program, what they are now doing differently in their classrooms as a result of their participation, and how their expectations of language-minority students may have changed. The trainers' survey addressed a variety of issues, including their attitudes toward the ESOL staff development and its usefulness.
Survey results revealed that the majority of teachers (82 percent) found the professional development in the program useful; however, teachers reported that it did not provide enough subject-specific information to meet their needs. Moreover, 70 percent of the teachers reported having developed new skills as a result of the program; for example, 66 teachers reported developing alternative materials (oral, visual, and experiential) to suit varying student learning styles, and 47
said they were incorporating students' home culture into the curriculum. In addition, 68 percent of teachers indicated that their expectations of English-language learners had changed as a result of the ESOL staff development, with 81 reporting changes in expectations for language development. The most frequently cited result was the realization that second-language acquisition is a developmental process. In general, the trainer survey results indicated that a large number of trainers believed the teachers found the information presented in the workshops useful.
As a result of the survey, researchers at the University of Florida who conducted the study plan to work with the Center for Applied Linguistics to revise segments of the ESOL inservice staff development program to make them more subject-specific and practicum-oriented. A practicum approach would involve teachers alternating between staff development sessions and classroom practice to receive feedback and work cooperatively with their peers to improve their teaching practice (C. Harper, personal communication).
The California Cross-Cultural, Language and Academic Development
California's CLAD program is another recent effort to reform state staff development programs and credentialing procedures for teachers of English-language learners (California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, 1992, cited in Leighton et al., 1993). The large and growing population of English-language learners across the state prompted the development of this new certification system, which combines cross-cultural, language, and academic development emphases into regular preservice and inservice teacher staff development programs. To add the CLAD endorsement to their license, already-credentialed monolingual teachers must pass examinations in (1) language structure and first- and second-language development; (2) special methods of instruction for English-language learners; and (3) cultural diversity. With the CLAD credential, teachers are allowed to teach in a classroom with English-language learners. To earn the bilingual credential (BCLAD), already-credentialed teachers must also pass examinations on (1) the target language, (2) the target culture, and (3) methodology for target language instruction. Preservice teachers are expected to meet the competency requirements for these credentials through their preparation programs. In addition, specialists who will train or supervise teachers in programs for English-language learners must complete professional development programs that address student assessment, curriculum development, staff development, community/parent relations, and research (Leighton et al., 1993).
Research on the implementation and effects of the CLAD/BCLAD credentialing system is sparse. Ross (1993) reports on a study of two preservice teacher education programs at San Diego State University and the University of California at Santa Barbara that prepare teachers for the CLAD/BCLAD certificate.
The San Diego State University program prepares teachers to work with English-language learners where bilingual programs are not available or to work in the English component of a bilingual program using English-language development methods (i.e., sheltered instruction). Preservice students can move from the monolingual CLAD program to the BCLAD program as they become proficient in a second language. The CLAD emphasis is offered within specified blocks of existing credential programs and requires that students complete both additional courses and field experience supervised by master teachers and university faculty. The required courses include Child Language Acquisition and Multicultural Education and Bilingual Teaching Strategies. The CLAD courses are based on the competency areas identified above.
In 1992, nine university faculty members representing different disciplines (language arts, mathematics, educational psychology, science, and social studies) participated in a year-long pilot program to prepare for teaching prospective teachers to receive the new credential. The faculty's main goal was to increase their knowledge in the areas of language and culture and to develop strategies for infusing relevant content into teacher preparation courses. Researchers at San Diego State University designed a study to assess the results of the faculty preparation program and its impact on student teacher preparation. This study included analysis of syllabi before and after staff development, interviews with faculty, and surveys of a pilot group and a comparison group of students. Ross (1993) states that the study's results were positive. The year-long process helped faculty focus on a wide array of cross-curricular goals to be pursued in the future. The majority of students in the CLAD program found it effective and perceived themselves as better prepared to meet the needs of English-language learners. For example, students in the program (as opposed to those in the comparison group) rated their program as more effective in dealing with the nature of culture (72 vs. 46 percent) and all areas of language structure and acquisition (71 vs. 27 percent).
Beginning in 1992, the California State Commission for Teacher Credentialing initiated a collaborative review of the CLAD/BCLAD programs at four University of California campusesSanta Cruz, Berkeley, San Diego, and Los Angeles Representatives from each campus provided input for the process, including the decision to conduct a formative review followed by a summative phase that would ascertain whether the CLAD/BCLAD standards developed by the commission were addressed at each campus.
The formative components of the evaluation have been used to assist each campus in its development of CLAD/BCLAD programs that meet the set of standards set by the commission. Relying primarily on interview data collected from participants in each program (i.e., students, instructors, local teachers, and administrators) over a 2-day period, the formative review uncovered important information about the variations in the programs' contexts and structures and the effect on program implementation. Some of these variations included the development
of a more cohesive curriculum at campuses that involved all program faculty in the design of their CLAD/BCLAD programs, strong collaboration among program faculty at campuses where teacher education was part of divisions of social science, and low levels of commitment and involvement from faculty in schools of education. Findings focusing on the quality of curriculum and instruction available to students across the four campuses indicated a need for additional curriculum preparation of CLAD/BCLAD candidates in the areas of English-language development and Specially Designed Academic Instruction in English (SDAIE). Students at all four campuses requested greater integration between theory and practice in methods courses and more modeling of English-language development and SDAIE strategies by instructors in the content areas. In addition, BCLAD students at each campus expressed a need for more opportunities to develop their ability to teach in languages other than English, especially in the content areas. The lack of master teachers with knowledge of CLAD/BCLAD methods was also an issue at all four campuses.
At this stage of the process, the formative phase of the review has been completed. The summative component is currently under way and is scheduled to be finalized in early 1997.
Summary and Conclusion
The four programs just described represent a variety of staff development efforts including continuing education (Cooperative Learning in Bilingual Settings, ESOL inservice project) recruitment (Latino Teacher Project), preservice education (Latino Teacher Project), and credentialing (CLAD program). All are informed by various sources (e.g., theoretical, basic, or school-based research) or professional judgment. Findings from the studies exemplify current thinking about what teachers of English-language learners should know and be able to do, effective methods for accomplishing this, and strategies for increasing the numbers of qualified instructors.
The Cooperative Learning in Bilingual Settings programs trains teachers to use an empirically validated method of teaching (BCIRC). The staff development effort stresses a comprehensive approach in which teachers are provided with theoretical content knowledge, as well as practice through supervision. A key emphasis of the project is on inquiry-based learning, in which teachers engage in peer coaching and collaboration with colleagues. The project highlights the importance of follow-up support systems.
The Latino Teacher Project is an effort to target minority populations to increase the pool of bilingual teachers in Central Los Angeles by creating a career ladder for Latino teaching assistants. Staff development efforts are based on a ''community of learners" model in which participants are assisted and assist each other in progressing through teacher education programs.
The ESOL inservice project, designed to assist all teachers serving English-language
learners in Florida, provides teachers with courses to help them better educate these students. Coursework includes methods of teaching ESL, cross-cultural communication and understanding, and testing and evaluation of English-language learners. Program staff are engaged in ongoing efforts to tailor the courses to meet the diverse needs of a heterogeneous group of teachers.
The CLAD Program, an effort to reform state staff development and credentialing programs, is geared to giving all teachers who work with English-language learners the skills and knowledge necessary to be effective. Teachers need the CLAD endorsement to instruct English-language learners.
All four of the teacher development programs described above have conducted or plan to conduct empirical research. This research consists of descriptive studies, surveys, and experiments examining the training process and its effects on teachers and/or students (e.g., Cohen, 1990; Cohen et al., 1996; De Avila, 1981, cited in Cohen, 1990). However, educators agree that more solid, empirical research on the development, implementation, and effects of professional development is greatly needed (Milk, 1991; Grant, 1991; Grant and Secada, 1990; Irvine, 1992; Lara-Alecio and Parker, 1994). The following recommendations address these research needs.
Origin of and Basis for Teacher Competencies
8-1. Research is needed to identify the origins of the components/attributes of teacher certification and professional development programs and assess the strength of the evidence that supports them. For example, what are the origins of the attributes and required qualifications included in the new California credentialing systems (California Cross-Cultural, Language and Academic Development [CLAD] and bilingual CLAD [BCLAD]) and Florida English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) inservice staff development efforts. Are they based on theory, empirical evidence, or expert judgment? Attributes that are missing according to our current knowledge base should be incorporated.
As noted in this and earlier chapters, most certification and professional development programspreservice and inserviceare based on lists of teacher competencies and attributes informed by various sources (e.g., theoretical, basic, or school-based research) or professional judgment. As Grant and Secada (1990:419) argue, teacher certification programs and requirements have not been empirically validated: "Though there are some things that we all agree are desirable to know and to do, it is far from clear that we have enough information to specify such domains on the basis of empirical evidence." Clearly research recommended in Chapter 7 will help elucidate what these attributes and components,
including subject matter knowledge, should be. Attributes that are justified by empirical evidence should be incorporated into professional development efforts.
8-2. Research is needed to examine the effects of matching teachers and students on cultural and linguistic characteristics.
As described earlier, the Latino Teacher Project is planning to conduct such a study. However, these studies are rare. Reviewing the literature on preparing teachers for diversity, Grant and Secada (1990:406) could not find research that investigated different recruitment and retention models for a diverse teaching force. They agree that the homogenization of the teaching workforce is "undesirable," but believe that "agreement should not preclude empirical inquiry." "The hypothesis [is] that teachers of color understand the cultural backgrounds of diverse learners better than whites; hence they can adapt instruction to meet those differences. What the source of such understanding is…and how that understanding actually translates into practice and student outcomes are all empirical questions."
The Development of Effective Strategies for Teacher Education
8-3. Research is needed to develop effective methods for use in preparing teachers of English-language learners.
As Milk et al. (1992:10) state, "there is a need to examine instructional practice in university-based teacher training programs, much the way that instructional practices have been examined in school settings." For example, what benefit do teachers gain from supervised internships, readings, and classroom discussion. How should these forms of teacher development be aligned? Further, more research is needed to identify factors, including theoretical knowledge, needed to support teacher learning once in the classroom and ensure that what is learned in professional development is applied in the classroom (e.g., feedback and peer coaching, organizational/school-based support, and opportunities to work in students' communities). Should preparation differ for different levels of teachers (i.e., early education, primary, secondary), as well as for teachers with different training and experience (e.g., ESL, mainstream), and if so, how? How are the needs of novice and veteran teachers different, and how does staff development accommodate these differences?
Effectiveness of Teacher Education Programs
8-4. Research is needed to evaluate current teacher education programs and staff development efforts to determine how well they have incorporated theory-based conceptions of effective teaching, as well as how well they have helped teachers acquire the skills and knowledge they need.
There are a number of important questions to be addressed in this area. First, is the curriculum consonant with the knowledge and skills teachers need to be effective (i.e., is the course content valid)? Second, are these programs using methods that are effective in helping teachers acquire the needed knowledge and skills (Romero, 1990; Calderon and Marsh, 1988; Calderon, 1994)? Third, have programs established learning goals and short- and long-term indicators, and are they using them to monitor teacher progress? If not, how is the acquisition of skills and knowledge assessed? Fourth, how are integrated teacher education programs structured and delivered in university settings? Are they adjunct courses, or are courses integrated and content infused throughout the teacher education curriculum? Finally, how well have teachers acquired the needed knowledge and skills? Appropriate models must be developed for evaluating the effectiveness of these initiatives.
Improving Assessments of Teacher Knowledge and Skills
8-5. Descriptive research on current teacher exams is needed to determine how well they assess teacher skills and knowledge characteristic of effective teaching for English-language learners. If these exams fall short, research is needed to inform the development of reliable and valid assessments of teacher knowledge and skills.
Currently, a variety of methods are used to assess teacher competencies within the context of teacher education and staff development. They include portfolios, as well as more traditional paper-and-pencil tasks. What is the best way to assess teacher competencies, taking into consideration variables such as whether the teacher is a novice or experienced?
8-6. The relationship between knowledge gained in professional development and its implementation in the classroom requires empirical investigation.
Few professional development programs include a follow-up component that assesses the correspondence between teacher learning and doing. The Center for Research in Educating Students Placed at Risk (CRESPAR) program profiled in this chapter is an example of this type of comprehensive staff development effort. An additional research step that would help validate the effectiveness of professional development would be to examine its effects on student learning and behavior. Do the attributes and competencies gained in professional development have a positive effect on student academic gains?
8-7. Studies need to go beyond fidelity assessments (Are teachers doing what we taught them?) to analysis of what the professional development field can learn from teachers in school and classroom contexts.
Grant and Secada (1990:420) contend that "we need to inquire about the sense in which teachers who fail to use content from their courses are making
valid responses to their situations." They suggest models need to be created to examine "why teachers use, or fail to use, what we think they know." Research at the classroom level is needed to investigate more closely the factors that might affect how teachers implement new methods learned in the classroom. What role do teacher attitudes play? To what extent do organizational factors (the provision of structured time to collaborate with colleagues, principal support) affect implementation of new knowledge and practices learned in the classroom?
Strategies to Increase the Pool of Teachers Serving
8-8. Research is needed to learn how to increase the number of teachers skilled in working with English-language learners.
More studies are needed to examine existing programs geared toward recruiting teachers to work with such students. How successful are projects designed to encourage and assist bilingual individuals, such as secondary school students, community college students, and paraprofessionals, in becoming educators of English-language learners? How does the support such projects provide to applicants (e.g., support for preprofessional coursework, credentialing programs) improve the number of teachers available to teach these students?
8-9. More research is needed to examine new teacher credentialing systems (e.g., CLAD/BCLAD) and professional development efforts (e.g., the Florida ESOL program) that attempt to serve all teachers who come into contact with English-language learners.
Recent efforts to prepare all future and existing teachers to meet the academic needs of language-minority students provide important research opportunities to examine more closely how best to structure such programs and assess their effects. A few studies have documented the development of teacher education programs for bilingual, ESL, and mainstream teachers (Milk, 1990, 1991; Calderon, 1994; Collier, 1985). For example, Calderon's work, which focuses on collaborative staff development, documents how this method facilitates professional growth and knowledge development among all teachers serving English-language learners. Her research highlights the different areas of professional change needed by mainstream and bilingual teachers to implement the BCIRC model. Many questions remain to be answered, however.
Preparation and Development of Teachers for
English-Language Learners with Disabilities
8-10. Research on how to prepare teachers to work with culturally and linguistically diverse students with disabilities is much needed. Research on professional development activities for these teachers is also needed.
Ortiz (1995) contends that given the large amount of time linguistically diverse students with disabilities spend in the regular classroom, regular-education personnel need to be prepared to distinguish learning disabilities from the normal development of second-language proficiency and to work collaboratively with specialists on meeting the needs of these students. ESL specialists also need training to be able to identify disabilities in English-language learners and coordinate with children's classroom teachers and learning disability specialists. Ortiz adds that once models are developed, their effectiveness requires empirical testing.
One promising model that should be investigated is the Optimal Learning Environment Project, developed by Ruiz and Figueroa (1995) to change the way teachers work with English-language learners with disabilities, as well as improve educational outcomes for these children.3
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ESTIMATING POPULATION PARAMETERS:
A review of the state of knowledge in estimating population parametersor the work generally referred to as education statisticsreveals the following key points:
Over the last 10 years, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) within the U.S. Department of Education has taken several steps to improve its collection and reporting of education statistics.
Eligibility rules for the participation of English-language learners in the National Assessment of Educational Progress have become more standardized to ensure greater consistency in student inclusion. A number of studies are under way to help ascertain the validity of using current or other criteria for exclusion, as well as to investigate other issues related to the inclusion of English-language learners.
Weaknesses in the collection and reporting of education statistics persist in a number of areas, particularly with regard to certain subpopulations, including English-language learners. Among these weaknesses are the following:
Insufficient coverage of subpopulations, which biases the results; results often cannot be generalized to the excluded groups.
Inconsistent data definitions across the various surveys and studies, limiting comparability.
Similar variation in identification procedures, data collection methods, data collection levels (degree of aggregation of numbers), and data collection purposes.
Gaps in the data on important variables of interest.
The central problem in assessing English-language learners is their limited ability to perform on a test administered in English. Assessments based on translations into a second language have questionable validity.
To address this problem, various testing modifications have been introduced, including flexible scheduling, small-group test administration, use of dictionaries, simplification of directions, reading of questions aloud, and extra time. The validity of such modifications has not been adequately researched to date.