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The Factors Related to the Reclassification Process for English Learners

Ronilee Mooney, Johnson & Wales University

Abstract

Much about the educational experience of an English learner (EL) rests on whether a single dichotomous event occurs: reclassification (Thompson, 2015). Reclassification from English as a Second Language (ESL) programming is a landmark event because it signifies a shift in educational experiences. Reclassification is the point when students are expected to fully function in mainstream classrooms, without any further special English language development (ELD), instructional services, or assessment accommodations (Kim & Herman, 2010). Although there is a growing body of literature regarding the time necessary for ELs to be reclassified that uses rigorous empirical methods and longitudinal student data (Parrish, Linquanti, Merickel, & Perez, 2006, Umansky & Reardon, 2014), key questions remain regarding ELs and their self-efficacy through the reclassification process. This mixed methods, sequential, explanatory study investigated and explored the relationships among factors that are related to the reclassification process for ELs in urban middle schools. ^ The study addressed the following research questions: 1. Is there a significant difference between ELs in urban middle school ESL programs and ELs in urban middle schools who have been reclassified with respect to the extent to which they self-report the importance of attendance, achievement in school, and proficiency in English? 2. Is there a significant difference between ELs in urban middle school ESL programs and ELs in urban middle schools who have been reclassified with respect to the following demographics: gender, ethnicity, and race? 3. How do ELs in urban middle school ESL programs and ELs in urban middle schools who have been reclassified describe their experiences in an ESL program? ^ During Phase One, a questionnaire was administered to ELs (N = 134) at five urban middle schools in a small northeast state. The second phase consisted of focus groups with two groups of ELs in urban middle school ESL programs (n = 16) and one group of ELs in urban middle schools who have been reclassified (n = 8) (Krueger & Casey, 2015). ^ No significant differences were found in Phase One. Phase Two revealed four major themes. Findings may lead to understanding of the relationships among factors that are related to the reclassification process for ELs, which may provide a means for improving school success for ELs.^

Subject Area

English as a second language|Education

Recommended Citation

Mooney, Ronilee, "The Factors Related to the Reclassification Process for English Learners" (2018). Dissertation & Theses Collection. AAI10793951.
https://scholarsarchive.jwu.edu/dissertations/AAI10793951

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