Title: Bilingual Problems of Practice Protocol and Discoveries: Supporting In-Service Teachers of English Learners During COVID-19
Stream: Professional development
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation
Jordan Gonzalez, St. John's University, United States
The novel COVID-19 pandemic has caused a rupture in the trajectory of education worldwide. In the U.S., it has been noted that the schism within education as a result of the pandemic is the biggest threat to national security (Choi, 2020). Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Multilingual Learners, specifically English Language Learners (ELLs), is one of the fastest growing student populations across the United States (National Center for Educational Statistics, 2017), and yet has some of the lowest graduation rates, such as in New York (NYSED, 2020). The pandemic further exacerbated the inequity for immigrant and ELL students with issues such as access to technology, digital literacy and continuity of learning. This oral presentation discusses a case study of a K-12 school district in New York, U.S.A. and the challenges, successes and best practices that emerged during a professional development initiative for in-service teachers of ELLs within Bilingual Education programs. These teachers participated in a "Bilingual Problems of Practice Protocol" where they engaged in peer consultancy to systematically discuss their instructional dilemmas during the pandemic. The result of the peer consultancy was the generation of ideas towards resolution. The Bilingual Problems of Practice Protocol provided the forum for teachers to engage in professional learning with each other, where they analyzed instructional dilemmas and contexts, discussed successful practices and tools they discovered, and provided direction for the next steps teachers took in supporting their ELL students.
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