Sunday, November 30, 2003

Tennessee State Board of Education considering "newcomer centers" for students with limited English proficiency

"Older students who move to Tennessee with little or no English skills might eventually have the option of spending a year in a 'newcomer' center before entering a regular classroom."

"The proposed centers would give middle and high school students more time to absorb the language before they are required to take — and pass — the state's high-stakes English, biology and algebra exams required for graduation."

"'This is an excellent early intervention if we want them to graduate,' said Carol Irwin, coordinator of the state's English as a Second Language program. 'Newcomer programs have an intense focus on literacy. They're gaining just basic literacy skills and cultural information.'"

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