Elevating Equity and Achievement for Emergent Bilingual Students

Texas Education Agency

August 2021

Elevating Equity and Achievement for

Emergent Bilingual Students:
Quarterly Newsletter

Ysleta ISD

Ysleta ISD

Greetings from the Director

Hello Texas!

Sending gratitude and respect to each and every Texas educator for the continued commitment to your profession.  The resilience shown by educators, students and their families is inspiring.

As will be tradition, this newsletter will recognize educators and districts who are nominated by their peers for going above and beyond to ensure achievement and equity for the emergent bilingual students they serve. We have also included significant and relevant updates from the 87th Texas Legislative Session, in addition to updated guidance, resources and information from our division and the agency.

Thank you for all that you do serve emergent bilingual students!


Julie Lara

English Learner Support Division, Director

Celebrating Educators of Emergent Bilingual Students Across Texas

Bilingual/ESL Educator Spotlight:

Do you know an outstanding educator of emergent bilingual students or an LEA (school districts or open-enrollment charters) that you’d like to nominate to be spotlighted in our newsletter? We would love to share instances of teachers, administrators and LEAs that demonstrate commitments to EB students by going above and beyond. Submit this nomination form today!

Educator Spotlight:

Billie Jo Ricord

Billie Jo Ricord

Medina Valley ISD

Mrs. Billie Jo Ricord goes above and beyond for every single one of her EL students to ensure that they succeed and reach their dreams.  She started the Dream Big! Club on the high school campus to get EL students interested in attending college.  Guest speakers at their monthly meetings talk about scholarship opportunities, how to fill out the FAFSA, and taking dual credit coursework.  Mrs. Ricord has taken the students on college campus tours in the San Antonio area so that they can envision themselves being on a campus.  In the past 3 years, several English Learners have received scholarships and this year had a student sign on to play soccer at Texas A&M-San Antonio after only being in the U.S. for 4 years.

 Thank you, Mrs. Ricord, for elevating achievement and equity for Emergent Bilinguals!

Administrator Spotlights:

This year’s virtual Title III Symposium was a great success! Our highest attended session was the panel discussion, “A Roadmap for Supporting English Learners During this Time”, in which we asked 5 superintendents from across the state how their districts supported EB students and their families during the pandemic. Their responses were authentic, moving, and meaningful. The overall theme of the discussion indicated that a holistic approach to supporting EB students and their families allowed for tremendous gains in attendance, engagement, and access. Thank you again to our panelist for their bold leadership!

2021 Title III Symposium Superintendent Panelist

Dr. Stephanie Elizalde – Austin ISD

Dr. Michael Hinojosa – Dallas ISD

Mr. Pedro Martinez – San Antonio ISD

Dr. Carlos Rios – San Felipe-Del Rio CISD

Dr. Kathy Rollo – Lubbock ISD

LEA Spotlights:

Klein ISD Logo

A round of applause goes to the Klein ISD Multilingual Services Department, led by Kathy Vergara, for establishing and continuously developing their Dual Language Immersion (DLI) program. Prior to the 2018-2019 school year, Klein’s 33 elementary campuses included 18 with transitional bilingual programs for Spanish speakers, and a concentrated Vietnamese speaking population not served through bilingual education. Klein recognized the value of providing a DLI pathway for all students, and currently has 7 of their 18 bilingual campuses implementing Spanish/English DLI programs, one of which also offers a Vietnamese/English DLI pathway.

A unique component of this implementation process was the strategic decision to train existing Spanish/English bilingual program teachers on all 18 campuses in biliteracy instruction, one of the pillars of a DLI program, and to provide the necessary materials for all. This forward-thinking plan ensured that all 18 campuses could begin to implement biliteracy instruction regardless of the current campus program model, and regardless of the altered pace of the DLI rollout due to the pandemic.

Check out their inspiring video from May of 2021. We see you, Klein ISD, and we are cheering you on as you recognize the promise of your multilingual students and prepare them for their future purpose!

87th Texas Legislation Updates

Transitioning to Emergent Bilingual in Texas

Texas passed Senate Bill 2066 replacing the term “Limited English Proficient” with “Emergent Bilingual” in Texas Education Code (TEC) effective September 1, 2021. USDE continues to use the term “English learner” in federal guidance, so either term could be used depending on the context of the guidance or resource. The English Learner Support Division is in the process of drafting revisions to TAC 89 that will include the new terminology as well as other proposed revisions. The Texas Register process does provide a mandatory 30-day comment period for stakeholders to weigh in on the proposed language. TEA will inform stakeholders when the open comment period begins.

Capital Building

Strategic Plan for Emergent Bilinguals

Texas passed Senate Bill 560 which requires TEA to develop a strategic plan for Emergent Bilinguals in coordination with Texas’ Higher Education and Workforce Commissions to increase the number of bilingual certified teachers and increase the effective implementation of dual language one-way and two-way programs. The agency is also charged with increasing awareness of the benefits of dual language programs for families and school districts.

Accelerated Learning Committees for Emergent Bilinguals

Texas passed House Bill 4545 which requires accelerated learning for students who do not perform satisfactorily or did not test on STAAR grades 3-8 or EOC Assessments.  HB 4545 goes on to require an Accelerated Learning Committee (ALC) for students who did not perform satisfactorily on Reading and/or Math STAAR for grades 3, 5 and 8. Guidance pertaining to the ALC for an EB student is that the ALC must have an LPAC representative. In other words, the LPAC cannot serve as the EB student’s ALC.  For more information on this please see this FAQ or email accelerated.instruction@tea.texas.gov

LPAC Guidance & Resources

LPAC Framework

As we approach school year 2021-2022, we encourage you to leverage the LPAC Framework site that includes clarification of the legal requirements for the LPAC and provides supplemental resources to ensure the appropriate identification, placement, assessment, services, reclassification, and monitoring of emergent bilingual students.

LPAC Framework Logo

The updated 2021-2022 Beginning-of-Year (BOY) LPAC Guidance Checklist can be found on the LPAC Frequently Used Resources page of the EL Portal. This resource provides a quick guide for LPAC members to conduct responsibilities, including completion of last year’s reclassification process (as needed), ensuring the appropriate identification and placement of new and transferring students, and communicating with parents and families on their child’s progress.

For answers to common questions regarding English learner programs and LPAC procedures, see our general FAQ for English Learners and LPAC.

Title III Guidance & Resources

2021-2022 ESSA Consolidated Federal Grant Application 

Application closing date is Friday, September 3, 2021 by 5:00 p.m. central time. Visit the program guidelines page 45 for Title III, Part A general program requirements and how to appropriately use Title III funds. For frequently asked questions about Title III, Part A, check out our updated Title III, Part A FAQ document. 

2020-2021 ESSA Compliance Reports 

The 2020-2021 ESSA Compliance Report must be completed using the Chrome browser and submitted by Thursday, September 30, 2021 by 11:59 p.m. central time. To access helpful resources provided by the TEA Federal Program Compliance Division, visit ESSA Consolidated Compliance Reports Resources. For additional information or questions, please email ESSASupport@tea.texas.gov.

Calculation of Federal Formula Grant Entitlements

Have you ever wondered how TEA calculates the ESSA allocation? TEA developed an ESSA Funding Reference Manual to explain the calculations process for grant programs. Title III, Part A - ELA and Title III, Part A – Immigrant formulas can be found on page 45. If you have clarifying questions after reviewing the manual, please email entitlements@tea.texas.gov.

2021-2022 Title III Funding Amounts 

LEAs can access their ESSA planning amounts for SY 2021-2022 at Entitlements. Final amounts will be released in late Fall of 2021.

Visit txel.org/ComplianceAndAccountability for additional ESSA Reporting and Guidance Resources.

Division Announcements

Lady attending a virtual meeting

2021-2022 English Learner Support Division Live Meetings

Our “Live Meetings” are intended for education service centers (ESCs), school district staff and open-enrollment charter school staff – we encourage all to attend if possible. Don’t miss out on an opportunity to engage with the TEA English Learner Support Division. Visit the Division Support Meetings page for upcoming dates.


2021 Title III Symposium

Thank you to all those who attended and presented at our first virtual event. To share your feedback on the large zoom events and the overall symposium experience, please click on the Title III Symposium Overall Evaluation. After completing the evaluation, you will receive access to your CPE certificate. Registered attendees will be receiving an email of how to access the recorded Zooms and all resources provided by the presenters that will be available on txel.org through October 22nd.

2022 Title III Symposium

Save the dates of July 28-29, 2022 to join us in San Antonio, TX for our Hybrid 2022 Title III Symposium.

2022 Title III Symposium Save the Date


Join our Communities of Practice!

The English Learner Support Division is seeking educators from across the state to partner with TEA to help strengthen supports and communication to LEAs for the following targeted areas based on collected feedback from the field. If interested in joining, complete this LEA Interest Form.

  • Newcomers
  • Biliteracy Instruction in Transitional Bilingual Education (TBE) Programs

Texas Effective Dual Language Immersion Framework (TxEDLIF)

Check out who serves on our state's Dual Language Guidance Committee as they plan to ensure the expansion and effective implementation of Dual Language Immersion (DLI) programs throughout the state. TEA will be piloting the Texas Effective Dual Language Immersion Framework (TxEDLIF) throughout the state beginning school year 2021-2022.

ELPS Academy Online Modules

Now available on TEALearn, you can access the previously offered Texas Gateway ELPS Academy online courses. For additional resources visit the ELPS Resource Tools page.

Resources for Families of English Learners

The TEA EL Support Division publishes parent and family newsletters that are coupled with our EL Web Portal to inform families of English learners of educational resources to increase the language proficiency and academic success of their child. March / April / May / June / July

Supporting my Child

Access helpful educational websites to share with families. The suggested links will strengthen listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills.

Supporting my Child page offers valuable information that can be viewed or printed in multiple languages.



Are you looking for educational opportunities for your families? Visit our Family Supports page to find community resources available in your area. Resources range from adult English as a Second Language (ESL) classes to trainings on technology. Discover other great community resources opportunities on our Community Partners page.

Family Supports
Student Resources

Check out the Student Resources page for links for English learners to practice their language skills through activities and quizzes. This page provides great resources as English learners explores next steps beyond high school.




We encourage educators to subscribe to txel.org to receive monthly parent and family newsletters and other helpful resources targeted to parents and families of ELs.

Special Populations Monitoring Updates

As preparations for the 2021-2022 school year continue, there will be trainings offered for the LEAs and ESCs. Special Populations Monitoring staff will be conducting virtual trainings regarding the Emergent Bilingual Self-Assessment and supporting documents. The trainings will provide information regarding the strategies, quality levels, justifications, downloading, and uploading of the self-assessment as well as timelines for release of the survey to LEAs and the due date for submission of the completed self-assessment. The trainings will also review the crosswalk regarding results driven accountability system (RDA) and the connection with strategies in the emergent bilingual self-assessment. Information regarding the training and registration will be published on the Review and Support resources website at: https://tea.texas.gov/academics/special-student-populations/review-and-support/review-and-support-resources. The Division of Special Populations Monitoring website can be accessed at the following link: https://tea.texas.gov/academics/special-student-populations/review-and-support/special-populations-monitoring.

TEA News & Resources


To help LEAs navigate the new legislative requirements, TEA has launched the following resources to help guide the implementation of the new state law requirements.

5th Annual Advancing Behavioral Health Collaboration Summit 

Advancing Wellness and Resiliency in Education

This summit is designed for professionals working in education service centers, local education agencies, state agencies and community organizations who desire to support schools, learn from colleagues, and strengthen student mental health in Texas. Don’t miss this opportunity to join each Thursday in September from 10:00 am - 1:00 pm. Register for the free at bit.ly/ABCSummit21

Equity in Gifted Talented Education logo

Gifted/Talented Education

The Equity in Gifted/Talented Education revised website will launch this month. The goal is to encourage equitable representation of student populations in G/T programs throughout the state by providing tools and resources that inform and support families and educators. Visit gtequity.org to review the current resources. The web address will remain the same.


AMET Conference Logo

2021 AMET Conference (In-Person)

November 17-19, 2021

This year’s Association for Migrant Educators of Texas (AMET) state conference will be held at the San Marcos Embassy Suites Conference Center. Visit the AMET website for more information.

Engaging hot topics:

  • Math and Reading strategies
  • Helpful websites and community resources
  • Educational apps
Title I Parental Conference Logo

Virtual Statewide Parental Involvement Conference

December 9-10, 2021

Attend this great event from the comfort of your home to learn about ways to support your child’s academic and mental health needs. Visit statewideparents.com to register.

Topics to be discussed:

  • Tips to help with homework
  • Managing their behavior with loving discipline
  • Bullying and cyberbullying
  • Internet and school safety

Did You Know?

8 percent of ELs are also receiving Special education services

To learn more about statewide data and facts related to English learners, check out our recently released Fact Sheets provided by the English Learner Support Division.

Preparing to get ESL certified?

Register for our free ESL Certification Training online course at txeslprep.org! Check out this video and flyer for more information.

TEA's Free ESL certification training is worth 12 CPE credits

Culture Corner

National Hispanic Heritage Month graphic

National Hispanic Heritage Month

This year we will observe Hispanic Heritage Month from Wednesday, September 15th through Friday October 15th.  During this time, we recognize not only the richness of the Hispanic/Latino culture but also the histories, diversity, and contributions Hispanics have made to strengthen our country. For instance, learn more about the contributions to literature by authors Carmen Tafolla, Texas State Poet Lauret and Carolyn Dee Flores both of San Antonio, Texas.