Sonoma County Office of Education

2021 English Learner Leadership Conference (Virtual)

Due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on 2020-21 school budgets, SCOE is underwriting this event on a one-time basis. The 2021 EL Leadership Conference will be offered at no cost to all registered attendees.

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.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021  |  Opening Keynote  |  3:00-4:00pm 

Exist in Dissent to Dismantle Public Education’s Educational Caste System

Daniela DominguezDr. Daniela Dominguez, Assistant Professor,
University of San Francisco and Director at On the Margins, LLC

Dr. Dominguez will emphasize the importance of examining, unpacking, and dismantling the caste system that exists in public education, including Sonoma County’s schools; a caste system that undervalues and oppresses English Learners. This presentation will encourage administrators, teacher-leaders, and district trustees to:

a) understand that the privilege of English speakers has been built on the marginalization of non-English speakers;
b) challenge the existing hegemonic values that privilege English speakers; and
c) build new pedagogical approaches that affirm English learners’ lives.


Wednesday, January 27, 2021  |  Learning Block #1  |  9:00-10:15am 

♦ Elementary Focus

Critical Conditions for English Learners in Distance Learning

Charice Guerra ELLC 2021Charice Guerra, SEAL

Jen McNeil ELLC 2021Jen McNeil, SEAL

In this moment of distance learning during a pandemic, teachers must prioritize the needs of English learners. The Critical Conditions for English Learners in Distance Learning are the foundation for planning whether in a hybrid or distance learning environment. Teachers will learn about ways to develop an asset-oriented lens, be prepared to provide a responsive and relevant instructional approach based on the key understandings that underpin language development. Strategies will be shared to bring the Critical Conditions to life in the classroom. Teachers will come away with resources, strategies, and tools to support English learners and their families. Participants will understand the essential research-based tenets of distance learning for ELs and know the connection between the CCELDL and the EL Roadmap.


♦ Secondary Focus

Fostering Interaction in a Digital Landscape: Strategies, Tips, Tech Tools

Esther Park ELLC 2021Esther Park, Instructional Designer, Educational Consultant, Coach

Interaction is key to successful learning. In this session, you will learn about research-based strategies, engagement tips, and tech tools to increase student-to-student, student-to-teacher, student-to-content interaction in a digital landscape. You will walk away with many ready-to-use Google Slides templates and resources to promote collaboration and interaction.  


♦ All Educators

Emerging Language Through Intentional Listening

Deedy Camarena ELLC 2021Deedy Camarena, Coordinator, ELD, Dual and World Languages
Santa Clara County Office of Education

One of the least practiced skills for English Learners is listening. Come join me as we learn about and engage in five types of listening, and how they can support understanding and comprehension. You will walk away with a listening activity that you can implement next week.


♦ Administrator Focus

Creating an Innovative ELD Program for Newcomers/LTELs

Efraín Tovar ELLC 2021Efrain Tovar, E.L.D., Computer Science, and Digital Media Arts teacher,
Abraham Lincoln Middle School, Selma Unified School District

Do you have newcomers and long-term English learners in your school district? Would you like to enhance your designated English language development (dELD) program? Join Efrain Tovar, a Google for Education Certified Innovator, Trainer, and newcomers teacher from Abraham Lincoln Middle School (Selma, CA) for a collaborative discussion on “PROJECT uMATTER.” Learn how this initiative completely redesigned/restructured Abraham Lincoln Middle School’s dELD program by using a Design Thinking process.


Wednesday, January 27, 2021  |  Learning Block #2  |  10:30-11:45am

♦ Elementary Focus

Using Maker Experiences to Access 
NGSS and Integrated ELD Learning

Ana Babarinde ELLC 2021Anna Babarinde, Coordinator Science,
Sonoma County Office of Education

Jenn Guerrero ELLC 2021Jenn Guerrero, EL Program Coordinator,
Sonoma County Office of Education

Matt O_Donnell ELLC 2021Matt O'Donnell, Tech Innovation Specialist,
Sonoma County Office of Education

Making has the power to authentically engage ELs while simultaneously building academic language proficiency. Participants will engage in a hands-on lesson experience that models how maker activities and stories can be used in NGSS lessons to support science learning and rich language development.


♦ Secondary Focus

Building Effective Assessments for English Learners

Deedy Camarena ELLC 2021Deedy Camarena, Coordinator, ELD, Dual and World Languages,
Santa Clara County Office of Education

How proficient are you at creating English Learner friendly assessments? Dive into this learning experience as we decipher the various elements of EL friendly assessments, and construct an assessment to use the next day.


♦ All Educators

Essential EdTech Tools for Future-Ready Teachers of ELLs

Efraín Tovar ELLC 2021Efrain Tovar, E.L.D., Computer Science, and Digital Media Arts teacher,
Abraham Lincoln Middle School, Selma Unified School District

There are nearly 5 million English language learners in U.S. public schools today. By 2025, one in four students in the U.S. will be an ELL. In California, there are over 2,375,000 ELLs. Teachers need to be equipped to continue providing the best tools for student learning both in and outside the classroom. How will you equip yourself to address the diverse cultural/emotional/linguistic/digital needs of your ELLs? In today’s session, you will learn helpful strategies for English Language Learners, including newcomers. You will also learn the latest research on technology and discover how to be a bridge maker in your ELLs digital/language world. This will be an interactive, hands-on workshop where you will leave with some great resources for your Future-Ready classroom!

♦ Administrator Focus

Establishing Effective, Meaningful Relationships with Families of English Learners

Alejandra De La TorreAlejandra De La Torre, Family Engagement Program Manager,
Colton Joint Unified School District

Participants will understand the importance of building connections with families of English learners. What are best practices which support families of ELs in their ability to actively and meaningfully be part of the decision-making process? How do you support them to extend the learning at home? Learn the what, why and how of EL family engagement. How can you establish and maintain open lines of communication with your EL families? How can you achieve fluid, respectful interactions with them. Leave this session empowered with information, tools and assurance that engaging parents of ELs is something you can do!


Wednesday, January 27, 2021  |  Role Alike Meet-ups  |  12:00-12:30pm 

Join colleagues for a lightly facilitated discussion to synthesize new learning, ask questions, and brainstorm together how this new information will be applied in your setting.

There will be four meet-ups to choose from: 1) elementary educators, 2) secondary educators, 3) administrators, 4) coaches and TOSAs.



When Tuesday, January 26 and Wednesday, January 27, 2021
Tuesday: 3:00-4:00pm - Opening Keynote
Wednesday: 9:00am-12:30pm (sessions)
Location Virtual via Zoom
Presenter See above for more information.
Cost Free
Audience Administrators, teacher-leaders, district trustees, EL coordinators, other school site personnel, and interested community members
Registration closes 01/25/2021
Questions Jenn Guerrero, (707) 524-2852,

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Online Registration is not available.