ESSA Establishes New ELL Requirements

TELL is what you need to meet them.

The new ESSA regulations will go into effect this fall, shining a spotlight on English Language Learning (ELL) programs. Does your ELL program have what it needs to support the new requirements?

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  • ESSA supports accountability

    Under ESSA, all schools will need to comply with statewide requirements for ELLs.

    To summarize, the overall goal of ESSA is to support states so they can successfully:

    • Set long-term goals and conduct measurements of interim progress for students’ English language proficiency (ELP)
    • Develop a Progress in Achieving English Language Proficiency indicator
    • Include all ELLs in their updated accountability systems, particularly ELLs with disabilities, former ELLs, and recently arrived ELLs.

    TELL supports ESSA

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    Click to download the full Longitudinal Report.

    Test of English Language Learning, or simply TELL, by Pearson is a unique, tablet-based assessment that gives students, teachers, and district administrators the support they need to meet the new regulations of ESSA.

    The new requirements are explained briefly below, and they’re followed by an overview of how TELL supports them.


    ESSA requirement

    All students who may be ELLs are to be assessed within 30 days of enrollment in a school in the State. [Title III Section 3102 (d) (2)]

    TELL helps you screen and place students quickly and accurately by:

    • Identifying students’ English language proficiency level and informing program placement decisions.
    • Diagnosing students’ abilities and skill levels to establish a baseline that can be compared with scores on the end-of-year diagnostic to demonstrate results

    ESSA requirement

    All ELLs served by the state will be given an annual assessment of English proficiency. The assessment must align with the state’s language proficiency standards. [Title I Part A Section 1111 (b) (2) (G)]

    TELL aligns with World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA™) English Language Development (ELD) Standards, as well as state standards.  

    ESSA Requirement

    Long-term goals must include increasing the percentage of ELLs making progress in achieving English language proficiency, based on a timeline determined by the state. The state will also determine what constitutes “proficiency,” which will then be measured by the assessments described in 1111 (b) (2) (G). [Title I Part A Section 1111 (c) (4) (A)]

    TELL helps teachers ensure that students are making adequate and timely progress, and provides critical documentation by:
    • Monitoring progress throughout the year — Brief, tablet-based, interactive assessments can be taken up to eight times during the term.
    • Identifying learning gaps and keeping students on track —TELL assessment results are available in minutes, providing the important, timely data teachers need to adjust instruction, and provide timely intervention
    • Providing clear data demonstrating growth—Comparing baseline assessment results with scores from the end-of-the-year diagnostic shows student achievement, and helps educators accurately determine which students qualify for ELD programs. TELL also provides longitudinal reports that show students’ multi-year progress, and parent reports are available in English, Spanish, and Chinese. All reports can be exported into Excel and uploaded into a student information system


    TELL has earned educators’ trust  

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    Click to download the full Parent Report
    TELL assessments are standards-based, and all results are based on valid and reliable data.

    Research studies show that Pearson’s assessment technologies score as accurately as expert human graders. In the last 15 years, Pearson’s spoken and written language assessment technologies have scored millions of responses, proving their accuracy, reliability, and validity.

    TELL is a tablet-based assessment with engaging, interactive items. TELL features online automatic scoring that generates reports within minutes. "Traffic light" reporting helps educators easily understand data and the next steps that should be taken.