English Learners in Select States: Demographics, Outcomes, and State Accountability Policies

Julie Sugarman & Courtney Geary
Date of Publication: 
August, 2018
Source Organization: 
Migration Policy Institute

As states shape and implement policies that hold K-12 schools and districts accountable for meeting federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) mandates regarding the education of English Learners (ELs), this series of fact sheets provides an overview of EL student demographics and outcomes in select states. It aims to build understanding among parents, educators, community advocates, and others of the characteristics of ELs in their states, of achievement gaps between ELs and their peers, and of the accountability policies states are designing to monitor their progress. Understanding and tracking these trends will be important for efforts to identify system weaknesses and better target actions to address them.

This series draws on data from state departments of education and the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2016 American Community Survey to examine the demographics of immigrant and EL students, covering everything from changes in population size to poverty levels, languages spoken at home, and which school districts have the most ELs. The fact sheets also provide an overview of EL student outcomes as measured by standardized tests and graduation rates. The 25 states selected are those that have the largest EL populations and that provide detailed data on them.

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Sugarman, J. & Geary, C. (2018). English Learners in Select States: Demographics, Outcomes, and State Accountability Policies. Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute. Retrieved from https://www.migrationpolicy.org/research/english-learners-demographics-outcomes-state-accountability-policies