ACCESS for English Language Learners
ACCESS for ELLs™ measures academic proficiency in English for students who are English Language Learners (ELL), that is, students learning English. Access for ELLs is administered at five levels: Kindergarten, 1-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12.
School districts are required to conduct annual tests to identify students whose English proficiency is limited. Students take ACCESS for ELLs based on a Home Language Survey administered to all students newly registered in a school district. The Survey asks whether a language other than English is spoken in the home, or whether the student speaks a language other than English. If the answer to either question is "yes," then the student takes ACCESS to determine English language "proficiency."
ACCESS assesses social and instructional English as well as the language associated with language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies, across four language domains (Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing). By analyzing scores on each of the domains, educators can determine how far along on the scale of English proficiency a student is. ACCESS scores ranging from 1 to 6 on each domain (Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing) are converted into a single ACCESS composite score. Those students scoring below a composite 4.0 are considered Limited English Proficient (LEP) and are eligible for language support services. Students who receive a composite score of 4.0 or above are considered "English Language Proficient."
If the score on ACCESS for ELLs indicates the student is limited English proficient (LEP), the district informs parents in writing of the results of the assessment and the program placement recommendations. Parent information includes a description of services that are available to assist the student to become English language proficient.