English language learners comprise the most rapidly growing segment of students in K-12. More than 10% of students are now identified as foreign language l
There are two types of English that all students learn — social English and academic English. Social English is what we learn and use in everyday communication. For students, it’s what they use outside of the classroom. Social English is what native speakers of English will acquire by just “growing up” in an English speaking household and community.
In contrast, academic English is what is generally taught in schools — our society’s accepted practices for formal English, including proper grammar, vocabulary and writing, and the ability to read such texts. This means that technically, all students, whether they are native speakers of English or not, must learn academic English. In other words, all students must make progress in their ability to converse, interact and compose using formal English to prepare them for college and careers. Mere fluency of social English is not sufficient.
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