English Language Acquisition

  • eight smiling elementary school-aged children of various races and ethnicities

    Our goal

    DPS believes every student’s home language and culture are assets that enrich our classrooms and, combined with English language skills, leads to success in school and life. The English Language Acquisition (ELA) department works to achieve the district's Vision of a DPS Graduate, in which all students graduate valuing cultural and linguistic diversity and are able to use their native languages and cultures as assets.

    What we do

    The ELA department provides guidance, resources, training and support to ensure that all schools can provide equitable, rigorous learning environments for their English learner students (ELs).

    Our students

    As of October 2015, DPS has 33,650 English learners in early childhood through grade 12. These students enrich the linguistic palette of our city with the sounds of more than 170 languages spoken across our district. Among them, 29,755 students receive ELA services in one of our ELA program schools. Spanish is the primary language for the majority of ELs in DPS. Other prevalent languages include Vietnamese, Arabic, Karen, Burmese, Somali, Amharic, Russian and Nepali. Our English Language Acquisition (ELA) programs help students learn English as they study their core subjects. The goal of the ELA program is to help students access the English language skills they need to meaningfully and equally participate in the district’s mainstream instructional program.