PLE 1: Module 3

PLE 1: Managing Change

Printable Version: PLE 1 Teacher Notes

Printable Version: PLE 1 Rubric



Teaching Notes

• Identify current local demographic changes

• Understand the complexity of the ELL population needs

• Expose candidate biases about the implications of growth of ELL population

• Candidates will identify how the leader makes sense of changing school demographics and how that influences her leadership

This module is called “Managing Change” because we believe that leaders have a role in addressing, facilitating, and optimizing change in order to ensure school conditions that foster learning for all students.

Candidates know little about changes in ELL populations that may exist in their own districts (especially if not reflected in their school). These local conditions often are microcosm of national trends.

Candidates have assumptions about how these changes affect their school culture and structures. Consequently, most schools respond by isolating ELL students (and teachers) and using deficit approaches to instruction.

Candidates have little exposure to alternate and additive approaches that recognize and maintain the value of L1 and L2.

Pre Activity

In order to gage how much students know about ELL trends and needs, we provide a simple, short T/F “quiz” that highlights some basic information and gets at underlying assumptions.

The focus of this activity is to emphasize the complexity of the knowledge necessary in leading for ELL success.

These are not “trick” questions. They address the underlying theory of ELL education regarding language acquisition, instructional programs, and policy issues.

The quiz can also be given “whole class” (rather than individually) to spark a discussion about what the do/do not know about ELL education.

If you are able to integrate this more into your class, these questions can be used as “study questions” in which students break into small groups and investigate the questions. Response can be presented in class or through an on-line discussion board.

Video Viewing

Video can be assigned independently or in-class as part of a guided discussion.

If viewed independently, discussion/reflection questions are embedded.

If viewed in-class, clips can be paused for discussion. Discussion can be whole class or in small groups.

These clips raise staff assumptions and some new vocabulary.  The video also highlights the complex nature of the ELL population.

The principal introduces,
Different mobility trends (movement within school district and movement from without the school district)
Different educational experiences (students with educational experiences in their native country, students with educational experiences in US schools, and students with interrupted formal education/SIFE)
Different language groups (one  large language group versus several smaller language groups)
Sources of teacher frustration (lack of teacher knowledge/skills, challenges to existing instructional systems, and concern over achievement levels)

Strain on existing structures (increasing reliance on ESL teacher and other support staff)

Guided Discussion

There are discussion questions embedded in the video.  For example,

  • What kinds of challenges did the demographic changes pose?
  • How did the staff respond of these changes?
  • How might those changes and attitudes affect the school’s ability to address ELL needs?

These discussion questions can be embedded in the local context.

Questions can also focus on the more complex issues of


Fry, R.. The Changing Racial and Ethnic Composition of U.S. Public Schools. Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, August 2007.

Fry, R. The Rapid Growth and Changing Complexion of Suburban Public Schools. Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, March 2009.

Heifetz, R. & Linsky, M. (2004, April). “When Leadership Spells Danger.” Educational Leadership. Washington, DC: ASCD.

McLaughlin, B. (1992). “Myths and Misconceptions About Second Language Learning: What Every Teachers Needs to Unlearn.” National Center for Research on Cultural Diversity and Second Language Learning.

These readings highlight the role of school in ELL achievement. Rather than “blaming” ELL students for, assumed, low achievement, these articles force students to address issues in schools and leadership.
Supporting Materials

Osorio-O’Dea, P. (2011). Bilingual Education Overview. Washington, DC, Congressional Research Services.

Flynn, K. & Hill, J. (2005) .“English Language Learners: A Growing Population,” McREL Policy Brief.

“Language Use and English-Speaking Ability: 2000.” US Census Brief.

Graphic on “Growing Number of English Language Students”

ASCD/Education Leadership on “Supporting English Language Learners”

These materials can be used in conjunction with or instead of the articles suggested.

Related Websites

US Census 2010

National Clearinghouse of English Language Acquisition

Office of English Language Acquisition

Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition

There are numerous websites but these offer both research and policy information on ELL students and communities.
Reflective Journaling

Reflective journals are an important part of individual leadership development. It allows students to capture their thinking and underlying assumptions. Periodically, students can analyze their journal and see how their thinking evolves over time, both in terms of sophistication and skill development.

Candidates journal about of their experiences in changing contexts and their feeling about it, as well as strategies that were used to “manage the change.”

One way to maximize the journaling experience is to give students time in class to share what they are learning about themselves/their leadership. This serves to highlight the value of the journal and also give you insight into where their learning needs are.

These journals can also be done on-line via individual discussion boards, blogs, etc.

Assessment Levels

Level One: Candidates reply to the discussion questions in written form based on principal’s responses.

Level Two: Candidates write a brief case study of the Global Middle School based on principal’s responses

Level Three: Candidates respond to guiding questions based on their own context

These assessments reflect the different levels of integration into existing course. Each “level” becomes increasing more complex and will require more time on the part of students and professor.

The extended activity described below requires extensive work outside of class and reinforces data collection and analysis skills.

Extended Learning
  • Option A: Candidates write an in-depth case study of Global Middle School, incorporating background information and readings, addressing all the leadership areas, based on principal’s responses.
  • Option B: Candidates write an in-depth case study, addressing all the leadership areas, based on their own context. This requires that candidates interview their/a principal on some/all the leadership areas and write an in-depth case study based on the data.

PLE #1 ELL Managing Change

Standard 2: A school administrator is an educational leader who promotes the success of all students by advocating, nurturing, and sustaining a school culture and instructional program conducive to ELL student learning and staff professional growth.


  • Candidates understand local, state and national demographic changes and the effect of these changes and trends on school conditions and their practice?
  • Candidates identify assumptions and biases related to the implications of growth of ELL populations.


Standard 6: An educational leader promotes the success of every ELL student by understanding, responding to and influencing the political, social, economic, legal and cultural context.


  • Candidates will identify how the leaders make sense of changing school demographics and how that influences their leadership.


Candidate Goals Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5
Can the candidate Identify and describe the need for current local, state and national demographic changes in ELL populations ? Candidate indicates that  current demographic ELL trends will have an impact on schools. Candidate identifies and describes, the impact of current demographic trends at all levels for ELLs. Candidate identifies, through data analysis the impact of current demographic trends at all levels for ELLs. Candidate identifies and describes through data analysis the impact of current demographic trends at all levels for ELLs. Candidate identifies, describes, predicts through data analysis the impact of current demographic trends at all levels for ELLs.
Can the candidates articulate their own and potential stakeholder biases about the implications of the growth of ELL population? Candidate suggests that biases about the growth of ELLs may exist. Candidate broadly identifies biases and assumptions related to the growth of ELL population. Candidate identifies sources of potential stakeholder biases and assumptions related to the growth of ELL population. Candidate identifies sources of self and other potential stakeholder biases and assumptions related to the growth of ELL population. Candidate identifies and explains sources of self and other potential stakeholder biases and assumptions related to the growth of ELL population.
Can candidates identify the processes leaders use to make sense of changing school demographics and how this influences their leadership decisions? Candidates perform a demographic trend analysis. Candidates indicate how demographic trend analysis findings could influence their decision making about student learning. Candidates identify how findings from the demographic trend analysis will influence school structures.    Candidates create or modify a vision and mission statement based on demographic trend analysis findings. Candidates translate demographic trend analysis findings  into strategic planning actions for ELL population.


Assignment: Candidates will read the following articles:

The United States of education: The changing demographics of the United States and their Schools.…School…/ 

EL Educational Leadership, March 2007, volume 64, number 6 offers titled Responding to Changing Demographics offers  several articles that challenge candidates to adopt a greater appreciation  for the inevitability of changes in school demographics.  Three of the articles, As Diversity Grows, So Must We, The Culturally Responsive Teacher, and Five Trends for Schools offer practical approaches for school leaders for meeting the challenges of changing demographics.

Candidates will construct a power point presentation targeted for a school parent group identifying the long and short range economic, social, and political impacts of demographic changes on ELLs and non ELLs.