English Mastery Council
In 2013, Senate Bill 504 created the statewide English Mastery Council (EMC) in order to improve the quality of English Learner (EL) education in Nevada.
The English Mastery Council makes recommendations to the State Board regarding policies for teaching English to students with limited English proficiency as well as reviewing preexisting policies on an annual basis and making recommendations for improvement to the State Board and district boards of trustees as applicable. EMC also makes recommendations regarding the requirements for an endorsement to teach English as a second language, and reviews the courses offered by the Nevada System of Higher Education related to training in the teaching of English as a second language, making recommendations related to whether the course of study provides teachers with the tools necessary to improve the English proficiency and academic achievement of pupils who are English learners. The Council develops standards and criteria for a curriculum for English learner students, reviews courses, and makes recommendations to improve the English proficiency and academic achievement of pupils who are not English learners but have scored at or below the 25th percentile in the subject area of English language arts.
The EMC submits an annual report regarding the work of the council and summarizing all recommendations.
Work Groups and Focus Areas
The EMC has 3 main areas of work, supported by working groups:
Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) Endorsement
This work group reviews university courses of study to teach English as a second language and makes recommendation to improve these courses of study. They also make recommendations to the Commission on Professional Standards for the adoption of regulations concerning the requirements for a TESL endorsement. This work group also addresses courses and recommendations related to the English Language Acquisition and Development (ELAD) endorsement.
District Policy and Criteria Planning
This work group makes recommendations regarding criteria for districts to develop policies for serving English learner students. District policies are reviewed annually, and recommendations are submitted to the State Board regarding policy criteria.
English Proficiency and Academic Achievement
This work group looks at the expectations placed on non-English learner students, how relationships are built with students, motivation and its relevancy to students, and individual models to support struggling students. This work is related to the development of standards and curriculum and increasing the English proficiency and academic achievement of pupils.
English Language Development Standards Framework
The EMC, in collaboration with the Department, has worked to update the English Language Development Standards Framework, which work in conjunction with the Nevada Academic Content Standards to provide guidance and support for the education and academic achievement of English learners.