Sonoma County Office of Education

English Learner Leadership Conference

Administrators, teacher-leaders, district trustees, and interested community members are invited to attend SCOE’s annual English Learner Leadership Conference. Participants will gain access to effective tools and strategies that pertain directly to English Learners at all grade levels. Sessions will be tailored for elementary educators, secondary educators, administrators, and TK-12.

Please note: Materials will only be available digitally at the conference; please bring an electronic device.

Morning Session

Morning Keynote

What are we sustaining? Affirming the cultural gifts of Latinx youth
Dr. Orlando Carreón | Teacher Educator, University of California Davis
In order to achieve equitable educational experiences for Latinx students, educators must begin with a pedagogy of trust, which centralizes student voices and seeks to create spaces of belonging. This session provides educators at all levels with important lessons for educating in the current political climate. Calling upon his research on Effective Teaching of Latinx Students: A Community Approach, Dr. Carreón illustrates what can be achieved when a community of educators makes a concerted effort to cultivate the cultural repertoire of Latinx students.

Elementary Focus

Bringing the CA ELD Standards Part II to Life
Karin Linn-Nieves | Director, Language & Literacy, San Joaquin County Office of Education
This interactive session focuses on the ELD Standards Part II, and how to use Part I to collaboratively build English learners’ knowledge of ‘How English Works.’ Participants will experience some possible applications of these standards with the goal of helping ELs develop an understanding of and proficiency in using academic English. In addition to activities, there will be student work and video clips, as well as reflections on learning.

Secondary Focus

Creating Connections in Service of Language Learning
Christina Grace | ELD teacher/coordinator, Rancho Cotate High School
English learners are positioned for success when the classroom culture is coupled with high expectations. Drawing from the California EL Roadmap, this session will focus on powerful strategies that build connections between teachers and students while supporting them to acquire both academic language and deep content knowledge.

Admin/TK-12 Focus

Creating Urgency: Using EL Shadowing to Open the Dialogue
Rachel Lemus Valenzuela | Assistant Superintendent, Educational Services, Mark West Union School District
Tracy Lavin-Kendall | Principal, Mark West Elementary

Schools are eager to build teacher capacity and implement high impact ELD strategies with their students in order to address the needs of EL students. However, meaningful change for ELs will not occur unless an authentic "sense of urgency" is felt by all teaching staff. Learn how one school created a sense of urgency among staff by leveraging EL Shadowing to illustrate the compelling need for a change in instructional practices for English learners. Participants will leave this workshop with a template, ready to create their own "sense of urgency" for ELs in their own school or district.

Admin/TK-12 Focus

A Comprehensive Approach to Distinguishing Differences vs. Disability
Timothy L. Tipton | Transdisciplinary Speech-Language Pathologist, San Diego Unified School District
Learn which tools and procedures can best distinguish intrinsic language-based disabilities from extrinsic differences when considering special education for English learners. This presentation will emphasize performance-based data collection along with a dynamic Response to Instruction and Intervention model (as part of a Comprehensive Evaluation Process for English Learners: CEP-EL). Participants will review extrinsic factors that may be impacting English learner education and language development. These differences often lead to a misidentification (both over- and under-) for special education services.

Afternoon Session

Afternoon Keynote

Looking Back, Moving Forward: Reflections on Lost Opportunities 
Esther Lemus | community member
Esther Lemus is a retired Sonoma County Dept of Public Health employee and former Head Start preschool teacher. Currently, she is a leader of the Moorland Neighborhood Action Team, a community group that formed after the shooting of teenager Andy Lopez in southwest Santa Rosa.  This keynote will provide insight into her early life and educational experience as an English language learner from a migrant family in central California. Based on her experiences as an EL child and, in later years, as a preschool teacher, she will speak to what she views as important education-related needs of EL students and what schools can do to address them.

Elementary Focus

Putting Principles into Practice: The CA English Learner Roadmap Elementary Teacher’s Toolkit
Lauren Ridgeway | EL Coordinator/Consulting Teacher, Rincon Valley Union School District
The California English Learner Roadmap policy outlines the ways in which schools affirm, welcome, and respond to the diverse range of EL strengths, needs, and identities. This session will closely examine Californians Together’s “Elementary Teacher Toolkit” and the many resources it provides to bring the Roadmap to life in the classroom. Teachers will leave this session with goals and powerful instructional strategies that directly impact and enrich the educational experiences of English learners.

Secondary Focus

Bringing the ELD Standards to Life in Integrated ELD
Karin Linn-Nieves | Director, Language & Literacy, San Joaquin County Office of Education
This interactive session focuses on the tandem use of Part I and II ELD Standards, across secondary content. Participants will experience some possible applications of these standards using complex text with the goal of helping their English Learners develop an understanding of and proficiency in using academic English.

Admin/TK-12 Focus

CA Practitioners' Guide for Educating English Learners with Disabilities
Timothy L. Tipton | Transdisciplinary Speech-Language Pathologist, San Diego Unified School District
The California Department of Education has recently developed a manual that provides guidance to local educational agencies on “identifying English learners as individuals with exceptional needs, classifying individuals with exceptional needs as English learners, supporting pupils who are both English learners and individuals with exceptional needs, and determining when such dually identified pupils should be either removed from classification as English learners or exited from special education.” Participants will learn about the wealth of information available in this invaluable resource.

When Friday, January 10, 2020
8:30am - 3:30pm
Location Sonoma County Office of Education
Presenter Please check back soon for a list of presenters
Cost $170.00 Includes continental breakfast and lunch.
Audience Administrators, teacher-leaders, district trustees, EL coordinators, other school site personnel, and interested community members
Registration closes 01/08/2020
Registration Connie Anderson, (707) 524-2823,
Questions Jenn Guerrero, (707) 524-2852,

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Online Registration is not available.