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English Language Learner Program

The English Language Learner Program in Eugene School District 4J provides specialized English language instruction to students who are not yet fluent in English. Our program is designed to provide systematic English language development which supports students‘ acquisition of the English language and the teaching of Oregon’s ELL standards. For further details about 4J’s ELL program see the ELL District Program Plan.

ELL Program Goals

  • English language learners will become proficient in English.
  • English language learners will meet the same academic content and achievement standards expected of all children.
  • English language learners will be provided meaningful access to the curriculum and an equal educational opportunity.

ELL Program Philosophy

Effective ELL instruction uses quality curriculum which reflects best practices in the field of second language acquisition, supports the teaching of ELL standards, and is provided by well trained teachers.

In addition, when designing effective educational opportunities for ELLs, we consider the following guiding principles:

  • To provide instruction that builds on students’ previous education, cognitive abilities, and English language proficiency.
  • To teach challenging content that enables students to meet performance standards in content areas that are consistent with expectations for all students.
  • To evaluate English language learners with appropriate and valid assessments that are aligned with state and local standards and take into account language proficiency and students’ cultural background.
  • To recognize that students come with their own language and culture which is an asset, not a detriment to their academic achievement.
  • The entire school community is responsible for the education of English language learners.
  • To provide instruction and school activities which reflect respect for diversity and show understanding of students’ varied cultural backgrounds.
  • To provide opportunities which build and strengthen the home-school connection.

Purpose of English Language Development Instruction

While there are many opportunities during the course of a day in a language-rich classroom environment for language learning, merely being exposed or engaged in activities in English is not sufficient to assure the development of full academic language proficiency.  Limited-English proficient students must receive explicit instruction in language that is differentiated based on their English language proficiency level. Effective English language development actively develops competence in the functions, forms and vocabulary of English and provides many opportunities to develop oral and written fluency. “Functions” refers to how to use language, e.g., asking questions, giving your opinion, describing situations, etc. “Forms” refers to grammatical features of language, e.g., plurals, past tense, etc.  Developing English learners’ language is crucial to supporting their literacy development.

Statewide ELL Report

Oregon English Language Learner Report
an annual publication required by ORS 327.016

ELL Program Contact Information


Lily Gold, ELL Program Coordinator (gold_l@4j.lane.edu)
Debi Starr, ELL Program Assistant (starr@4j.lane.edu)

Buena Vista Elementary
ELL Program Office
1500 Queens Way
Eugene, Oregon 97401