ERIC Number: EJ793903
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Reference Count: 18
Teachers' Perceptions of ELL Education: Potential Solutions to Overcome the Greatest Challenges
Batt, Ellen G.
Multicultural Education, v15 n3 p39-43 Spr 2008
Concern for the status of linguistic minority education in Idaho provided motivation to investigate the perceptions of the inservice educators who work most closely with a large proportion of English language learners (ELLs) in the rural state's public schools. This study sought to learn directly from the state's ELL educators what they perceived as the greatest challenges and needs for improvement of ELL education. The investigation aimed to directly solicit solutions and priorities from participants in order to design professional development for the short term, and to rethink teacher education in a proactive mode for the long term. The study found that the greatest challenges affecting ELL education were educators' qualifications, understaffing of ESL and bilingual educators, and extra duties. Inservice practitioners need professional development to compensate for knowledge and skills not obtained during the teacher certification process, yet needed in today's educational context. Practitioners voiced a need to hire more specialists, and to provide all educators a multicultural education and training in ESL methods as a means to acquire more assistance from mainstream teachers. As demographics of English learners increase and shortages of ESL and bilingual educators continue, all educators need the requisite knowledge and skills to effectively educate linguistic minority students. Teacher education programs can proactively impact ELL challenges by modifying course offerings to include minority parent involvement, ESL methods, and sheltered instruction for all pre-service teachers. The success of ELL students cannot remain the sole responsibility of ESL and bilingual educators in the era of No Child Left Behind.
Descriptors: English (Second Language), Second Language Instruction, English Teachers, Bilingual Teachers, Teacher Attitudes, Rural Schools, Teacher Qualifications, Teaching Load, Inservice Teacher Education, Professional Development, Teacher Supply and Demand, Teacher Surveys, Preservice Teacher Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Idaho
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001