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Age Appropriate Placements

According to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it is a violation if limited English proficient (LEP) students are retained in grade for failure to demonstrate basic skills in English.  The same policies that apply to all students in the school system regarding age-appropriate grade placement should also be followed for LEP students.

To have disparate and indiscriminate placement policies and/or practices solely based on lack of English language proficiency can prove to be detrimental to the students, well as determined to be a violation of his/her civil rights.

A memo from the Southeastern Equity Center in Miami Florida regarding “Age-Appropriate Placement of LEP students” states:  The LEP students already feel inadequate enough by not being proficient in English, without adding “insult to injury” by placing them below grade level.  To date, there is nostudy that has proven the practice of initially placing LEP students below grade level to be beneficial.  There exists  no evidence that such a practice promotes learning Englishany faster, or any better, than age-appropriate placement.

Research indicates that for every grade a student is retained, it brings him/her closer to dropping out of school.  This is why it is imperative that teachers know about their LEP students’ educational backgrounds and cultures.

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Published by Nydzia Smith on August 26, 2016
        
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