2014 Bilingual Directors Meeting, Denver, CO





The Magnolia Hotel

818 17th Street

Denver, CO 80202


WEDNESDAY  May 14, 2014

         7:30 am – 3:00 pm

School Site Visits  for School Districts Only

Meet in lobby of Magnolia Hotel at 7:30 am.

Lunch provided at school sites.

           5:00 pm – 6:30 pm


Denver Public Schools Visit Debrief   (All Invited)

Debrief and light refreshments at Magnolia Hotel.

THURSDAY  May 15, 2014

7:00 am – 4:00 pm


7:00 am – 8:00 am

Continental  Breakfast

8:00 am – 8:30 am


Michael Casserly, Executive Director of the Council of the Great City Schools

Tom Boasberg, Superintendent of the Denver Public Schools

    8:30 am – 9:00 am


Introduction and Meeting Objectives

Participants will have the opportunity to introduce themselves and learn about the objectives and format for the 2014 BIRE meeting. 



Gabriela Uro, Manager ELL Policy and Research, CGCS

9:00 am – 9:50 am

Coffee Service

9:30 am – 10:30 am



Staying on Track for Graduation- ELL Indicators

During this session, participants will learn about the most recent research conducted by the Consortium regarding indicators that are predictive of high school graduation for ELLs.  Participants will have an opportunity to discuss the implications of these findings, and to explore ideas for maximizing the potential for ELLs to obtain a high school diploma.


Julia Gwynne, Senior Research Analyst, The University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research


Angienette Estonina, Multilingual Department, SFUSD

10:00 am – 12:00 pm


College & Career Ready—Item Analysis and Analysis of Student Work

New evidence underscores that our students are not yet performing at the level required by the Common Core. CGCS analyzed items from the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) that reflect expectations similar to those in the Common Core. The response patterns on those items frame important questions about the quality of district curriculum, classroom instruction, and expectations for student work.


In this session, participants will have an opportunity to review examples from the 2013 NAEP, and to discuss how these items mirror the level of rigor and conceptual understanding that the Common Core requires of all students. This examination of language demands, district expectations, and instructional support should accelerate the evolution of rich, rigorous, standards-aligned instruction for all students.




Ray Hart, Director of Research, CGCS

Ricki Price-Baugh, Director of Academic Achievement, CGCS

Denise Walston, Director of Mathematics, CGCS

Robin Hall, Director of English Language Arts, CGCS



Philip Farson, Acting Director of ELL, Anchorage School District

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm



1:00 pm – 2:00 pm


Leadership in Time of Change

The work of educators who are devoted to improving achievement for ELLs takes place in an ever-changing environment.  Recent demographic shifts, along with the adoption of the Common Core State Standards, have exacerbated the intensity of this change.  So what should leadership look like in this context?  How do educators successfully navigate the uncharted waters of the Common Core? How can ELL program directors foster a shared responsibility for ELL achievement, and build strong bridges and capacity across departments and throughout schools?  Panelists will share lessons learned, and will engage participants in a discussion that seeks to answer all these questions.


Lily Wong Fillmore, Professor Emerita, University of California, Berkeley

Valeria Silva, Superintendent, St. Paul Public Schools

Toni Cordova, Chief Strategy Officer, Santa Clara County Office of Education  


Ricki Price-Baugh, Director of Academic Achievement, CGCS

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm


Coffee Service

2:30 pm – 3:30 pm






ELL Program Improvements

Participants will hear from three Council member districts that have been undergoing a comprehensive reform of their ELL programs. In two of these districts, the Council conducted a comprehensive ELL program review; one district took on their own comprehensive self-review.  Panelists will share an update on the status of program improvements, lessons learned, and key challenges faced by their districts.  







Soledad Barreto, Director of ELL, Providence Public School District

Veronica Gallardo, Director ELL & International Programs, Seattle Public


Jana Hilleren, Executive Director of ELL, Minneapolis Public Schools

Muhidin Warfa, Director ESL/Bilingual Programming, Minneapolis Public



Beatriz Pereira, Executive Director of the Bilingual Education and World Languages, Miami-Dade Public Schools

3:15 pm – 4:15 pm





Building Welcoming Schools For Refugees and Immigrants: Resources and Initiatives

Sanja Bebic will provide an update on refugee resettlement trends. Sanja and Susan Downs-Karkos will share information about resources available to schools and communities to ensure they are meeting the needs of refugee students and families. Sanja and Susan will lead a discussion about the development of a joint CAL and Welcoming America initiative, the Welcoming Schools Initiative, focused on making school communities more welcoming to refugees and immigrants.


Sanja Bebic, Director of The Cultural Orientation Resource Center

Susan Downs-Karkos, Director of Welcoming America Strategic Partnerships


Margarita Pinkos,  Executive Director of Multicultural Education, Palm Beach County Public Schools

5:00 pm – 6:30 pm

Reception and Vendor Display


Dinner On Your Own

Friday  May 16, 2014


7:00 am – 4:00 pm


7:00 am – 8:00 am

Continental  Breakfast & Brief Remarks

Susan Cordova, Chief Academic Officer, Denver Public Schools


8:00 am – 10:00 am  


The Selection of Common Core-Aligned Instructional Materials for ELLs Participants will be briefed on the draft User’s Guide, Selecting Common Core- Aligned Instructional Materials for ELLs, which includes the following elements:







I.   ELD 2.0 and ELL Program Models

Participants will learn about a framework for English Language Development, called the ELD 2.0 Framework, which is anchored in the language demands of the Common Core.  Participants will also hear how districts have applied this framework to describe and/or revise their own ELD programs. 



Terry Walter, Executive Director, Office of Teaching & Learning, San Diego Unified School District 

Nicole Knight, Executive Director of the ELL Office, Oakland Unified School District Tamara Alsace, Director of Multilingual Education, Buffalo Public Schools



II.    Matching Instructional Materials to your program design

Participants will learn how one district determined the type of instructional materials needed to deliver the district’s ELD/ESL program using ELD 2.0 as a model.



Farah Assiraj, Senior Director for Research and Instruction, OELL Boston Public






III.   Instructional Materials Evaluation Tool with Considerations for ELLs

Participants will review and discuss the Instructional Materials Evaluation Tool (IMET) for English Language Arts, now including considerations for ELLs, as an anchoring reference for selection of instructional materials.  


Debra Hopkins, ELL Project Coordinator, CGCS

Coffee Service

9:30 am – 10:30 am


10:00 am – 10:30 am


Grade by Grade Rubric

Participants will learn about the CGCS project to develop additional guidance for selecting the best instructional materials by grade level. Sample drafts will be shared and participants will have an opportunity to provide input on how to address language demands and access grade-level complex text.



Ricki Price-Baugh, Director of Academic Achievement, CGCS

Denise Walston, Director of Mathematics, CGCS

Robin Hall, Director of English Language Arts, CGCS

10:30 am -12:00 pm

A Cognitive Strategies Approach to Help ELLs Meet the Common Core Standards for Text-Based Analytical Writing

Dr. Carol Booth Olson will share research and practices from an IES randomized field trial that helped ELLs improve as academic writers and led to the funding of an $11 million dollar i3 grant to scale up her Pathway intervention to the Southern California region.


Carol Booth Olson, Associate Professor School of Education UC Irvine


Helen Butts, ELA/Language Literacy and Culture Studies Coordinator, Denver Public Schools

     12:00 pm – 1:15 pm

McGraw-Hill Education Award Luncheon


1:15 pm – 2:15 pm


Strategic Placement of ELLs to Maximize Services & Support

It is an ongoing challenge to strategically place ELLs, both within schools and across the district, in a way that maximizes their access to curriculum, language development, and overall support.  Districts must consider a number of factors including staffing, choice programs, state law, transportation, and more. Panelists from four districts will describe their policies and practices, sharing challenges and opportunities.




Efe Agbamu, Assistant Superintendent, Multicultural, St. Paul Public Schools

Mary Waldron, Director, Office of Language Acquisition, San Diego

Unified School District

Sandra Rosario, Supervisor of Programs for ELLs, Hillsborough County Public Schools

Olivia Hernandez, Director of ELL, Austin Independent School District


Joseph Dow, Senior Compliance Manager, Office of English Language Learners, Boston Public Schools

2:15 pm – 2:45 pm


Legislative and Federal Update

Council staff will provide a brief update on appropriations, ESEA reauthorization and other federal level action.


Gabriela Uro, Manager ELL Policy and Research, CGCS

2:45 pm – 3:45 pm

Coffee Service

2:30 pm – 3:30 pm



ELL KPIs and Budgeting

During this session, Council staff will provide an update of the Academic Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) project, with specific attention to the metrics that are relevant and important for monitoring ELL progress and achievement (both language development and grade-level content mastery).  In a subsequent phase of the project, additional cost-related KPIs may be identified to inform decision-making related to resource allocation to support quality ELL programming.


Irina Okhremtchouk, an expert in school finance and language minorities, will provide an overview of programmatic complexities and organizational politics related to budgeting, particularly regarding programs and services for ELLs. Participants will develop a deeper understanding of the budgetary issues related to ELLs, and will have an opportunity to discuss which cost indicators related to ELL instruction and support would be important and feasible to include in the next phase of the Council’s KPI project.



Gabriela Uro, Manager ELL Policy and Research, CGCS

Jonathan Lachlan-Hache, Special Projects Specialist, CGCS

Irina Okhremtchouk, Assistant Professor of Education, Arizona State University


Antonieta Bolomey, Assistant Superintendent for ELL, Boston Public Schools

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Breakout Sessions

Break Out 1



Innovative Partnerships with Higher Education

Dr. Hakuta will share findings on his initial Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and will brief participants on current MOOCs under development for districts.


Gándara and her team will present on Project SOL 2.0, a bilingual, binational (US-Mexico) effort to develop online, open access, common core-aligned and interactive Algebra 1, 2, and Geometry courses.  The team will discuss plans to develop similar materials for Biology, Chemistry and Physics as well. A short video will demonstrate the instruction in action.



Kenji Hakuta, Professor of Education at Stanford University

Veronica Gallardo, Director of the Department of ELL and International

Programs, Seattle Public School District


Patricia Gándara, Professor of Education and Co-director of The

Civil Rights Project at UCLA

Ursula Aldana, Project Coordinator The Civil Rights Project at UCLA

Cesar Fuentes, Algebra 1 HS Teacher/Curriculum Specialist,

Sylmar High School


Darlene LeDoux, Executive Director for Academic Achievement for English Learners, Denver Public Schools


Break Out 2


Strategic Use of Native Language to Build Content Knowledge

Tamara from Buffalo Public Schools and Kate from CUNY-NYSIEB project (NYS Initiative on Emergent Bilinguals) will present on Buffalo's work with the project.  This initiative focuses on instruction, project-based learning, and accessing community resources to support English and content learning through the use of the students' home languages, such as Karen and Spanish.


Christine from Denver Public Schools will share their district’s latest developments regarding Spanish literacy instruction and the New Language Acquisition Guidelines for their K-5 Developmental Bilingual Model. (Denver Public Schools has about 12,000 ELLs enrolled in programs where Spanish is the language of instruction for part of the day.) 





Tamara Alsace, Buffalo Public Schools

Kate Seltzer, Research Assistant, CUNY-NYSIEB

Christine Muldoon, English Language Acquisition Director of Instructional Practices, Denver Public Schools


Rebecca Blum-Martinez, Director of Latin American Programs in Education, University of New Mexico

5:00 pm

Questions and Wrap-Up



Debra Hopkins, ELL Coordinator, CGCS

Gabriela Uro, Manager ELL Policy and Research, CGCS  

SATURDAY  May 17, 2014



8:30 am


Continental Breakfast

8:30 am – 9:30 am

Feedback and Future Meetings

Goals and objectives, issues, and venue for future meetings will be discussed.


Gabriela Uro, Manager ELL Policy & Research, CGCS

Terry Tabor, Conference Manager, CGCS

9:30 am

BIRE Meeting Adjourns