JLSD ESL Program

  • Jackson Local Schools ESL Handbook

    According to Lau vs Nichols, a landmark legislation, schools are required to provide special services to children whose native language is other than English and they can not participate in mainstream classroom curriculum without assistance.

    ESL – English as a SECOND LANGUAGE
    The ESL program of Jackson Local School District (JLSD) serves culturally and linguistically diverse students whose native language is not English.  The objective of the program is to provide students with the English and academic skills they need to be successful, active participants in the local community.

    Jackson Local Schools is proud to have an ESL program that over the years has served students speaking fifty different languages and dialects.
    JLSD identifies students to participate in the ESL program based on the federal government definition of (LEP) Limited English Proficient students as described in Public Law 107-110, the
    No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

    An LEP student is classified as one:
    Who is age 3 – 21. Who is enrolled in an elementary school or secondary school, who was not born in the United States or whose native language is other than English; and who comes from an environment where a language other than English is dominant AND whose difficulties speaking, reading, writing or understanding English may be sufficient to deny the individual - the ability to meet the state’s proficient level of achievement on State assessments, the ability to achieve successfully in classrooms where the language of instruction is English; or the opportunity to fully participate in society.
    [P.L. 107-110, Title IX, Part A, Sec. 9101, (25)]


    Based on the State of Ohio ELP (English language proficiency) Standards, JLSD identifies ESL students in the following levels of proficiency in English:
    Level 1 - 
    Level 2 - Beginner
    Level 3 - Intermediate
    Level 4 - Advanced

    Monitor at least 1 year then exit known as Proficient Trial Mainstream year

    Exit LEP Program following 1 year of Proficient Trial Mainstream

    Determining a student’s level

    Students take an English language test when they enroll and at the end of each school year. Teachers use the test scores and the ESL benchmark charts to determine students' levels.

    Length of Time in ESL Program

    Our goal is for each student to advance at least one level each year, however, some students may take longer and others will move more quickly.  Research shows that achieving academic proficiency in English takes   7 – 10 years for students who have not studied in their first language and 4 – 7 years for students who have had education in their first language. Some high school students may take longer than 4 years to complete their graduation requirements.
    Description of Levels & Instructional Support

    Level 1 & 2 students

    Limited oral proficiency and/or significantly below grade level in reading and writing.
    At these levels students receive intense language instruction, basic and survival vocabulary, and help adapting to new culture. Students’ classroom and homework assignments are modified to the levels of their language proficiency. Grading system is modified to meet their ability in the classroom.

    Level 3 & 4 Students
    Advanced oral proficiency and/or one to two years below grade level in reading and writing.
    Elementary and Middle school students may join special reading groups.  Elementary and High school students will also receive resource support from an ESL teacher who will work with classroom teacher.  

    * ESL service for students with disabilities will be addressed in the students’ IEP (individualized education plan).

    At Least One Year of Monitoring (Proficient Trial Mainstream)

    Students who score above level 4 will be monitored for a mandatory one year period.  This may be increased based on teacher's recommendation at end of first year.  This period of monitoring is to make sure that they continue to make appropriate progress.  It is in compliance with and a requirement of the federal law, “No Child Left Behind”.

    (State of Ohio LEP Exit Criteria - click here)


    The Foundation for Our

    JLSD is committed to training all teachers in the best practices in ESL teaching, which provides academic instruction in English while focusing on the development of English language skills. These practices reflect the latest research developments on second language acquisition.


    You have the right to understand your child’s level of English proficiency.

    You have the right to remove your child from the recommended support service.

    You have the responsibility to make sure your child attends school regularly.

    Encourage your child to complete homework assignments.

    Research shows that children who are literate in their first language perform much better in school than children who are not literate in their first language.  Please continue to interact with your children in your first language and to encourage them to become bilingual.