Yıl 2019, Cilt 8 , Sayı 4, Sayfalar 221 - 235 2019-12-30

Assessment Considerations on English Learners and Their Disproportionate Placement in Special Education

Hilal PEKER [1]

This paper is a review on the assessment considerations for English language learners (ELLs). It provides an in depth examination of the disproportionate representation of ELLs in special education programs in the U.S. so that it can represent a model for the current Turkish special education programs that may have more immigrant and refugee students with an increasing Syrian student population at schools. Specifically, this paper focuses on the following key constructs in the representation of second language learners in special education programs: (a) considerations for assessment processes of ELL students and students with learning disabilities (i.e., shared characteristics) (b) assessment processes for identification of ELLs and students with learning disabilities (c) validity and fairness of standardized assessments for eligibility determination (d) referral practices for ELLs and (e) implications for future research. This paper also provides implications for assessment considerations at schools.
English language learners, special education, disproportionate placement, assessment considerations
  • Abedi, J. (2006). Psychometric issues in the ELL assessment and special education eligibility. Teachers College Record, 108, 2282-2203.
  • Artiles, A. J., Rueda, J., Salazar, J., & Higareda, I. (2005). Within group diversity in minority disproportionate representation: English language learners in urban school. Exceptional Children 71(3), 283-300.
  • Caesar, L. G., & Kohler, P. D. (2007). The state of school-based bilingual assessment: Actual practice versus recommended guidelines. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 38, 190–200.
  • Capps, R., Fix, M., Murray, J., Ost, J., Passel, J. S., Herwantoro, S. (2005). The new demography of America's schools: Immigration and the no child left behind act. Urban Inst., Washington, DC. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED490924
  • Chabon, S., Brown, J., & Gildersleeve-Newman, C. (2010). Ethics, equity and English language learners: A decision-making framework. ASHA Leader, Retrieved from www.asha.org/Publications/leader/2010/100803/Ethics-Equity-ELL.htm
  • Christina, B. (1993, January 1). Reducing the inappropriate referrals of language minority youngsters to special education settings through teacher training. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=ED366139&site=eds-live
  • Chu, S. Y., & Flores, S. (2011). Assessment of English language learners with learning disabilities. The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 84(6), 244-248. doi: 10.1080/00098655.2011.590550
  • Donovan M. S., & Cross, C. J. (2002). Minority students in special and gifted education. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
  • Figueroa, R. A., & Newsome, P. (2006). The diagnosis of LD in English learners: Is it nondiscriminatory? Journal of Learning Disabilities, 39, 206–214.
  • Flaitz, J. (2018). Refugee students: What every ESL teacher needs to know. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.
  • Fletcher, J. M., Lyon, G. R., Barnes, M., Stuebing, K. K., Francis, D. J., Olson, R. K. (2002). Classification of learning disabilities: An evidence-based evaluation. In R. Bradley, L. Danielson, & D. P. Hallahan (Eds.), Identification of learning disabilities: Research to policy (pp. 185–286). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
  • Fletcher, J. M., Francis, D. J., & Morris, R.D. (2005). Evidence-based assessment of learning disabilities in children and adolescents. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology 34(3), 506-522.
  • Garcia, S. B., & Ortiz, A. A. (2006). Preventing disproportionate representation: Culturally and linguistically responsive prereferral interventions. Teaching Exceptional Children, 38(4), 64-68.
  • Hallahan, D. P., Lloyd, J. W., Kauffman, J. M., Weiss, M. P. and Martinez, E. A. (2005). Learning disabilities: Foundations, characteristics, and effective teaching. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
  • Huang, J., Clarke, K., Milszarski, E., & Raby, C. (2011). Assessment of English language learners with learning disabilities: Issues, concerns and implications. Education, 131(4), 732-739.
  • Individuals with Disabilities Act [IDEA]. (2004). Retrieved from http://idea.ed.gov
  • Klinger, J., & Harry, B. (2006). The special education referral and decision-making process for English language learners: Child study team meetings and placement conferences. Teachers College Record, 108(11), 2247-2281.
  • Lam, T. C. (1993). Testability: A critical issue in testing language minority students with standardized achievement tests. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 26, 179–191.
  • Lau, M. Y., & Blatchley, L. A. (2009). A comprehensive, multidimensional approach to assessment of culturally and linguistically diverse students. The psychology of multiculturalism in the schools: A primer for practice, training, and research 139-171. Bethesda, MD: National Association of School Psychologists.
  • Liu, Y.-J., Ortiz, A. A., Wilkinson, C. Y., Robertson, P., & Kushner, M. I. (2008). From early childhood special education to special education resource rooms: Identification, assessment, and eligibility determinations for English language learners with reading-related disabilities. Assessment for Effective Intervention, 33(3), 177-187. https://doi.org/10.1177/1534508407313247
  • McCardle, P., Mele-McCarthy, J., & Leos, K. (2005). English language learners and learning disabilities: Research agenda and implications for practice. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, 20(1), 68-78.
  • National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). (2018). The condition of education: English language learners in public schools. Retrieved from https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator_cgf.asp on April 23, 2019.
  • National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition (NCELA). (2019). Retrieved from https://ncela.ed.gov
  • National Council of Teachers of English (2008). English language learners: A policy research brief. Urbana: Il. National Council of Teachers of English. Retrieved from http://ncte.org/library/NCTEFiles/REsources/PolicyResearch/ELLREsearchBrief.pdf
  • No Child Left Behind Act (2001). Pub. L. No. 107-110, 115 Stat. 1425.
  • Ortiz, A. A., & Maldonado-Colon, E. (1986). Reducing inappropriate referrals of language minority students to special education. Bilingualism and Learning Disabilities, 37-50.
  • Ortiz, A., Robertson, P., Wilkinson, C. Y., McGhee, B., & Kushner, M. (2011). The role of bilingual education teachers in preventing inappropriate referrals of ELLs to special education: Implications for response to intervention. The Journal for the National Association for Bilingual Education, 34(3), 316-333.
  • Ortiz, A., Wilkinson, C. Y., Robertson, P., & Kushner, M. I. (2006). Considerations in implementing intervention assistance teams to support English language learners. Remedial and Special Education, 27(1), 53-63.
  • Padolsky, D. (2005). How many school-aged English language learners (ELLs) are there in the US? Retrieved from: http://www.ncles.gwu.edu/expert/faq/011eps.htm.
  • Reeves, J. R. (2006). Secondary teachers attitudes toward including English Language Learners in mainstream classrooms. The Journal of Educational Research, 99, 131-142.
  • Rhodes, R., Ochoa, S.H., & Ortiz, S. (2005). Assessing culturally and linguistically diverse students: A practical guide. New York: Guilford.
  • Rinaldi, C., & Samson, J. (2008). English language learners and response to intervention: Referral considerations. Teaching Exceptional Children, 40(5), 6-14.
  • Rosa-Lugo L. I., Mihai, F. M., & Nutta, J. W. (2012). Language and literacy development: An interdisciplinary focus on English learners with communication disorders. San Diego: Plural Publishing Inc.
  • Salvia, J., & Ysseldyke, J. E. (2004). Assessment and Inclusive Education. New York: Houghton Mifflin.
  • Sandberg, L., & Reschly, A. (2011). English learners: Challenges in assessment and the promise of curriculum-based measurement. Remedial and Special Education, 32(2), 144-154.
  • Thomas, W. P., & Collier, V. (2001). School effectiveness for language minority students. Washington, DC: National Center for Bilingual Education.
Birincil Dil en
Konular Eğitim, Özel
Bölüm Research Article

Orcid: 0000-0002-2642-3015
Yazar: Hilal PEKER (Sorumlu Yazar)
Ülke: Turkey


Başvuru Tarihi : 21 Aralık 2019
Kabul Tarihi : 29 Aralık 2019
Yayımlanma Tarihi : 30 Aralık 2019

APA Peker, H . (2019). Assessment Considerations on English Learners and Their Disproportionate Placement in Special Education . ELT Research Journal , 8 (4) , 221-235 . Retrieved from https://dergipark.org.tr/tr/pub/eltrj/issue/50370/662860