Federal & State Requirements

Refer to 2021 English Language Development Guidebook: Designing, Delivering, and Evaluating Services for English Learners for more information about specific state and federal laws that impact the way schools and districts serve English learners.  

There are two state laws that specifically address English learners in Colorado:
• Colorado Senate Bill 109 – C.R.S. 22-24-106 ELP Assessment
• Colorado House Bill 14-1298 – C.R.S. 22-24-101 English Language Proficiency Act (ELPA)

Colorado Senate Bill 109, C.R.S. 22-24-106 requires the Colorado Department of Education to develop and adopt one common assessment to identify English learners and annually measure English language development. The current ELP assessments are:

• W-APT/WIDA Screener -- state mandated assessment to identify English learners
• ACCESS for ELLs –- annual assessment to measure English language development and attainment

Cheyenne Mountain School District uses both of these assessments. The W-APT/WIDA Screener is administered when students are enrolled in the school district, and their Home Language Survey indicates that there is an influence of another language present in the home. The ACCESS for ELLs is administered each year in January/ February to measure students’ annual growth in English proficiency. Once results are reported to schools in late spring, parents are then notified in writing of their child’s results.

Colorado House Bill 14-1298 – C.R.S. 22-24-101 is the English Language Proficiency Act (ELPA). This is a state funded program that provides financial and technical assistance to districts implementing programs to serve the needs of English learners. The state of Colorado defines an English learner as “a student who is linguistically diverse and who is identified [using the state-approved English language proficiency assessment] as having a level of English language proficiency that requires language support to achieve standards in grade-level content in English.”

ELPA establishes that districts must provide an English language development (ELD) program to assist ELs in acquiring English and achieving and maintaining grade-level performance in academic content areas. The goal of the program is to increase the English language proficiency.


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