Lack of Educational Resources for Non-Native English Students

PRE-PROPOSAL 1. Media Artifact

Link to your media artifact(s) giving background on the issue:

Infographic: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_wChOTuG5ZIID2ASJKsTlPvT58c4KrTEYFKzadj_tR4/edit

2. Persona and POV statement Persona:

Katherine Smith

Age: 32

Worker at CAN in Ann Arbor full time

Americorp Worker

Two Children

“I feel as if I am not supporting my children to my greatest extent, and missing from their lives but I am conflicted because of the help I’m providing in the Michigan schooling system.”

 

About:

-Single Mother

-Drives over an hour for work each day to elementary and middle schools CAN after school program

-Upon arrival at her house, Katherine needs to drive her daughter to dance and son to soccer

-Cries about the children in her program when leaving because she classifies herself as an “overachiever” whose pay does not match her duties

 

Goals:

-Spend more time with her children

-Learn to speak fluent spanish

-Reduce the achievement gap in the Elementary Schools in the Ann Arbor Area

-Buy a car that does not break down each time the temperature drops below twenty degrees

SOLUTION ONE: The government will fund after-school programs for children in need of extra-assitance, which will specifically focus on students who are learning English as a second language.

SOLUTION TWO: Each school district will individually evaluate each second-language English student to assess each student's abilities, and place them individually into class levels and extra counseling services based on each of their needs.

SOLUTION THREE The government funds the hiring of teachers for after-school programming for students in need, so that Americorp workers receive an increase in income, as the students will benefit from experience with first-hand instructors, benefitting the entirety of the academic structure in the state of Michigan.

BACKGROUND AND RESEARCH PROCESS Context

Reference to a current Michigan bill or law that relates in some way to your proposal:

On December 10, 2015, President Obama signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), reauthorizing the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and replacing the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), the 2001 reauthorization of ESEA. The ESSA was enacted to instill new directions, assessment, accountability, and supports for schools and students, and educator quality.

Why this proposal will make a difference in the lives of students of all ages across Michigan, or a significant subgroup (by age, background, economic status, and/or region, etc.) of students in Michigan:

How and where did you learn about the issues underlying your proposal?

With 662,000 students being of foreign descent (7% of Michigan's student population), these large volumes of students are at a disadvantage in their learning experience due to the lack of funding into programming for second language English students. Being that there is an unavailability of hiring of appropriate instructors for the students in need, proficiency levels are failing. The larger Michigan second language English student population is struggling predominately due to the absence of resources being provided. Being that Detroit hosts one  the lowest income populations of the U.S. cities, the inner-city schooling system is failing at providing assistance for language proficiency.

Following the presentation shared by Community Action Network of Ann Arbor regarding the lack of guidance provided to many impoverished students, much in which also did not speak English as their primary language, I realized I wanted to join in on the efforts being pursued for the education of these children. As I continued to research regarding the education of minorities in inner-city school districts, I realized that much action needed to be taken in the Greater Detroit area, as well as the entirety of the state of Michigan.

How has your service activity influenced your thinking about this proposal?

During my weekly attendance at Mitchell Elementary School, I have tutored middle school and elementary school children in their homework. During these sessions, I have directly observed the struggles of the students who do not speak English as their primary language. When being met with the parents after each day, my heart aches in the hardship that these students endure on a daily basis. While some of these parents attend pick up, the dysfunctionality becomes evident as they appear intoxicated, or simply not capable of caring for a child. As these students' lives at home is just one aspect of this issue, schools should be a productive environment free from these stressors. With high percentages of these classes being second-language English students, the troubles only worsen. The lack of resources provided in the traditional schooling system is not feasible for the success of the students. The ESL students are struggling to meet grade level academics.

 

Link to your media artifact(s) giving background on the issue:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_wChOTuG5ZIID2ASJKsTlPvT58c4KrTEYFKzadj_tR4/edit

Consultations

Talk directly with at least 3 real live people who have special knowledge about this topic or the impact your proposal would have, and summarize their comments. These may include people appearing in your media artifact (video, podcast, etc.).

CONSULTATION 1: Jennifer Yudell: Instructor at elementary school in the greater NYC area that a program has been implemented for LEP students. 

Jennifer educated me of the after school program that  has been implemented across several middle and secondary schools in the Greater New York City Area. She promises the results and improvements that  have. Been observed across a multitude of LEP students such as an increase in communicative skills, courage to speak in integrated class time practices, and academic testing scores.

CONSULTATION 2: Parent of attendee of CAN Elementary School Programs

Each day after program, the parents of the CAN Elementary School Programs attend the Mitchell Elementary School with a mile long grin on their face, enough to explain the impact the program exerts of these children. After every single day, the direct, Libby Gazley shares with the parents the improvements each of their children have made. When 3rd grade LEP students begin reading above grade level, this is a groundbreaking advancement. 

CONSULTATION 3:  Tom Director of CAN at Mitchell Elementary School

While the Ann Arbor School District makes up a high of 17.1% of the student body, Tom runs the CAN after school program, making a drastic difference in each student's lifestyle. Every day after session, he gathers the volunteers to discuss the improvements each student has made, and not a day has gone by there that i have no sharred a students ability to now do "long division" or read an entire chapter book, when they were just preliminary math and exploring picture books previous to CAN that very day.

 

Reaction or advice from a Topic Coordinator:

You must solicit a critique from a topic coordinator, and explain the impact that advice has had on the final draft of this proposal.

When meeting with Jenna, she assisted me in altering my proposal to only consist of one solution, in that the solutions following are all based on the logistics of that platform. In doing this, she helped me choose that the after-school program is the most fortified route of my proposal, and that this should be implemeted across all schools in the State of Michigan. Before meeting, my proposal was not directional at one solution, so the presentation would have been overwhelming and chaotic.

Research process:

Describe your research process — indicate who you talked to (including but not limited to consultants), what you read, what your thinking was, how it changed over time, and how your consultants changed your thinking. This description of your research process definitely could include “dead ends,” or ideas you had that didn’t ultimately bear fruit.  In short, we want to know what you did and how it led to your legislation, and we also want you to give us a window into your thought process.

My research process stemmed directly from my time spent at the Mitchell Elementary School. My observance of the strugglign (but improving student) academic levels instigated me to read farther into the issues face by Lower Proficiency English (LEP) students in Michigan. While in the beginning, I sought out to only find solution to funding issues in the state, as I read and researched about existent and successful after school programs in other states, as directed by Michael Fahy, we agreed that this was a missing piece of the education structure in the state. The most difficult part of my experience was contacting consultants. It took several times of practice to receive the very answers I was looking to discover, as I learned I needed to alter the direction of my questions in order to reflect these exact answers. While speaking on the phone, these directors and parents did not always have the time to answer my questions, promised to give me calls back, which taught me the scarcity of time is important in starting early in this research. The successful nature of the CAN program in Ann Arbor became a model for my thinking, as such a simple structured academic setting can increase a student intensity and longevity in academic success, so I was determined to find out more in making these results widespread.

Author contributions:

Please delineate--in detail--who made what contributions to the process and to the finished proposal? Who took on which responsibilities in researching ideas, drafting language, etc.?

While the very proposal was worked on solely by myself, I utilized the resources of TC, Jenna Kravitz, along with Michael Fahy. As I was struggling quite a bit with creating feasable solutions as well as the wording of the very issues, the both of them assisted me in consisely portraying my thoughts along with specified language use . I completed the entirety of research ideas independently, as I did not work with a partner on my proposal. 

FORMAL PROPOSAL

The sections below should comprise your final proposal language, submitted for consideration by your peers and potential inclusion in the MSC Platform.

Preambulatory clauses

These set up the PROBLEM, but not the solution.

WHEREAS....The state of Michigan's Education structure is lacking ability to allocate the funds to provide necessary services for students who learn English as a Second Language

WHEREAS.... The Michigan Schooling System is lacking attention to the reality that not all students have identical needs.

WHEREAS…. The State of Michigan has guaranteed a requirement for each limited proficient English (LEP) student to meet their individualized needs.

WHEREAS….There is a gap between the guarantee implemented by the State of Michigan, and what is actually occuring.

 

WHEREAS….There are possible effective interventions and solutions.

 

WHEREAS...66% of students in the Michigan public schools are LEP students.

 

WHEREAS….The English Language Learners program that has been implemented to offer alternative services and accomodations, such as daily instruction and state assesments is not effective as need be.

 

Operative clauses

These describe in detail, the solution you are proposing (not the problem itself; those should go in the "Whereas" clauses above).

THERFORE IT BE RESOLVED...

1. The government will focus on implementing seperate after school programs for ESL students in each school district, so they remain integrated with the students who are proficient in these languages, but receive additional help, as not all students belong in the same level of course material.

2. Each school district will individually evaluate each second-language English student to assess each student's abilities, and place them individually into class levels and extra counseling services based on each of their needs, and decides of the after school program is correct for their needs.

3. The government funds the hiring of teachers for after-school programming for students in need, so that Americorp workers receive an increase in income, as the students will benefit from experience with first-hand instructors, benefitting the entirety of the academic structure in the state of Michigan.

4. Bilingual programs be implemented to encourage the education of simultaneously speaking in diverse languages

5. A pilot after school program be tested for 5 years at all public schools across Michigan to discover if success is occuring.

6. Each bilingual teacher receives a minimum of $29,700 bonus at the end of the school year if working 3 hours a day for every 180 days of school in a year, calculated based on the average salary of a bilingual teacher in the State of Michigan divided by the numbers of hours worked.

Counter-arguments:

What are three reasonable arguments against this proposal?

1. The government will not provide funds because they cannot allocate these volumes of funds to a problem that only considers a percentage of the entirety of the state.

2. Parents will oppose paying extra tax money that will be allocated to the success of ESL students, when their children are not in this group of students. 

3. Administrators will want an increase pay for staying extra hours.

Costs and funding:

What will your proposal cost (in direct expenses, lost tax revenue, lost economic opportunity, and/or non-monetary costs)? How will you pay for your proposed legislation? Where will/could the funding for your proposal come from?  Who might object to dedicating resources to your proposal (competing interests)?

While the current salary for an educator in Michigan is around $50,000-$83,000, there would need to be an implementation of an additional amount of these educators based on the size of the individualized district, along with the percentages of each amount of ESL students. The proposed legislations funding must come from government subsidies, along with money organized by each individual school districts resources, such as parent-teacher comittees or clubs. However, those whose students are not ESL students might propose opposition to funding education for other children.

References:

These can include websites or other information you have found about the issue.

http://mitesol.org/Advocacy-Policy

http://www.colorincolorado.org/ell-family-outreach

https://www.freep.com/story/opinion/contributors/2019/02/13/education-funding-michigan-english-as-a-second-language/2637418002/

file:///Users/sophiebeder/Downloads/EL-factsheet2018-Michigan_Final%20(1).pdf

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Total votes: 20

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