SACRAMENTO – Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday signed a bill by California State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego) that makes sure parents know whether a school has classified their child as a “long-term English Learner” or an “at risk, long-term English learner” and what the implications of that classification might be.
“Schools must keep parents in the loop about their child’s progress in learning English,” Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher said. “It’s the only way parents can make an informed decision about their child’s education. We must do our best to make sure all children, whatever their first language, are given a chance to succeed academically.”
Roughly 1.4 million California students are English learners, according to the state Department of Education’s most recent figures. In a third of the state’s school districts, at least 75% of the student body is comprised of students classified as long-term English learners. AB 81 would require that schools notify parents about whether a child has been classified as a long-term English learner or an at-risk English learner, a status that can impact that student’s ability to succeed academically. This notification will provide parents with vital information, helping them take whatever steps they think necessary to make sure their child succeeds in school.
AB 81 passed the Assembly 77-0 on Sept. 13 after passing the Senate 39-0 on Sept. 11.
Some school districts already take such action. In Assembly District 80, for instance, Chula Vista Elementary School District has a strict policy of providing annual status updates to the parents of long-term and at-risk, long-term English learners. The Chula Vista district’s concerted efforts on behalf of English learners has resulted in above-average scores compared to other California students in the same category.
For more information on this issue or to schedule an interview with Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher, contact Alex Roth at 619-228-3253.
Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher represents California’s 80th Assembly District, located in southern San Diego County, including the cities of San Diego, Chula Vista, and National City. She serves as Chair of the Assembly Committee on Appropriations, Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Women in the Workplace, and Vice Chair of the California Latino Legislative Caucus. For more information on Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher visit https://a80.asmdc.org/