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English Language Development Standards

The English language development (ELD) standards, ELD video series, information, and resources to assist local educational agencies (LEAs) design, implement, and enhance integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learner students.

California Education Code (EC) Section 60811 requires the State Board of Education to approve English language development (ELD) standards for pupils identified as English learners. The standards shall be comparable in rigor and specificity to the standards for English language arts (ELA), mathematics, and science.

California English Language Development Standards: Kindergarten Through Grade 12

California English Language Development Standards (PDF)

The California English Language Development Standards (CA ELD Standards) amplify the California State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects (ELA/Literacy). The CA ELD Standards, when used in tandem with state content standards, assist English learner students to build English proficiency, refine the academic use of English, and provide students access to subject area content.

English learner students need a purpose for using language (social function), need to understand how to use the language meaningfully, and access resources to be knowledgeable in language selection to be precise and convey exact meaning.

The SBE adopted the CA ELD Standards in November 2012.

The CA ELD Standards are available as a free download. Printed publications of the CA ELD Standards may be purchased through the CDE Press Educational Resources Online Ordering web page.

CA ELD Standards Implementation Plan

Letter presenting the CA ELD Standards Implementation Plan to the Governor
Following adoption of the CA ELD Standards, EC Section 60811.3 (e) required the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and the SBE to present to the Governor, and the appropriate policy and fiscal committees of the Legislature, a schedule and implementation plan for integrating the CA ELD Standards into the public education system.

CA ELD Standards Implementation Plan (PDF)
The CA ELD Standards Implementation Plan identifies major phases and activities in the implementation of the CA ELD Standards throughout California’s educational system. The plan describes the philosophy of, and strategies for, the successful integration of the CA ELD Standards that align to the ELA/Literacy Standards to address English language and literacy skills English learner students need in key content areas. The goal of the CA ELD Standards Implementation Plan is to serve as a guide of the major steps in the development, adoption, and implementation of the CA ELD Standards for LEAs.

Integrated and Designated ELD

Integrated ELD is instruction in which the CA ELD standards are used in tandem with the state-adopted academic content standards (Title 5 California Code of Regulations [CCR] Section 11300[c]).

Designated ELD is instruction provided during a protected time in the regular school day for focused instruction on the state-adopted ELD standards. During Designated ELD, English learners develop critical English language skills necessary for accessing academic content in English. (5 CCR Section 11300[a]).

The following resources are available to support administrators and teachers to design, implement, and enhance integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learners.

Integrated and Designated ELD Video Series (NEW)

The ELD Video Series tab contains videos demonstrating designated ELD and related integrated ELD instruction for ELA, mathematics, and science in grades transitional kindergarten/kindergarten through grade twelve.

Integrated and Designated ELD Letter to the Field (Dated December 18, 2019)
The California Department of Education (CDE) and the State Board of Education provides the field with guidance for integrated and designated ELD instruction and additional resources.

Integrating the CA ELD Standards into K–12 Mathematics and Science Teaching and Learning: A Supplementary Resource (DOC; 2015)
The CDE developed a supplementary resources to support the implementation of the CA ELD Standards in mathematics and science subject content area instruction. The supplementary resource provides examples explicitly demonstrating the relationship between the ELD standards and the mathematics and science standards.

English Learner Toolkit of Strategies, Volume 1 External link opens in new window or tab.
The toolkit provides high leverage strategies to increase English language proficiency in both integrated and designated ELD. The toolkit was developed by the Curriculum and Instructioin Steering Committee (CISC) ELA/ELD CISC Subcommittee ELD Workgroup.

Strategies for ELD External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
This collection of ELD strategies, with descriptions and examples, was compiled by the Tulare County Office of Education from the snapshots and vignettes within the ELA/ELD Framework (2015).

Expanded View of the ELA/ELD Framework Resources
A collection of resources that support the implementation of the ELA/ELD Framework, including integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learners.

ELA and ELD Implementation Support Videos
Videos from the Implementation Support for the ELA/ELD Framework web page are organized by key theme and area of focus, including integrated and designated ELD.

California Practitioners’ Guide for Educating English Learners with Disabilities
Guide and other resources for identifying, assessing, supporting, and reclassifying English learners with disabilities.

Content Standards and Curriculum Frameworks

California ELD Standards (PDF)
The CA ELD Standards, when used in tandem with state content standards, assist English learners in building English proficiency, refining the academic use of English, designed to provide them access to subject area content.

Content Standards
Content standards defining the knowledge, concepts, and skills that students should acquire at each grade level in mathematics, science, history-social science, visual and performing arts, world languages, computer science, health education, and other content areas.

ELA/ELD Framework
The ELA/ELD framework, specifically Chapter 2, provides guidance for implementing the CA ELD Standards for integrated and designated ELD instruction. Chapters three through seven provide guidance for the implementation of ELA/ELD instruction specific to each grade level. 

Vignette Collection of the ELA/ELD Framework (PDF)
The vignette collection lists the vignettes for each grade level with the chapter and page number where they are located in the ELA/ELD Framework.

ELA/ELD Framework Vignettes Summary Sheet
The vignette summary sheet is organized so that each grade level section has a pair of vignettes that can be interpreted together: an ELA/Literacy with integrated ELD vignette and a companion designated ELD vignette.

Snapshot Collection of the ELA/ELD Framework (PDF)
Snapshots for each grade level with the chapter and page numbers where they are located in the ELA/ELD Framework.

ELA/ELD Framework Vignettes and Snapshots Chart
Snapshots and vignettes for each grade level with the chapter and page numbers, and indicates the different content areas each snapshot and vignette addresses in the ELA/ELD Framework.

All Curricular Frameworks
SBE-adopted curricular frameworks for mathematics, science, history-social science, visual and performing arts, health education, and other content areas.

Integrated and Designated ELD Video Series

ELD Video Series Home | Transitional Kindergarten-Kindergarten Videos | Grade One Videos

The ELD video series for grades two and three will be coming soon.

The California Department of Education developed a series of videos demonstrating designated ELD instruction and its related integrated ELD instruction during ELA, mathematics, and science. The Integrated and Designated ELD Video Series demonstrates the relationship between the CA ELD Standards and state content standards. When used in tandem, English learner students build English proficiency, refine academic use of English, and access subject area content in transitional kindergarten/kindergarten through grade twelve.

The videos in this series feature teachers delivering integrated and designated ELD instruction to English learners. Teachers use the CA ELD Standards to design intentional and purposeful ELD instruction that supports English learners to learn English and apply academic use of English through various content areas. English learners are equipped with linguistic resources and experiences to meaningfully engage with grade-appropriate text and contribute to academic discussions with teachers and their peers.

This video series aligns with the California English Learner Roadmap Policy, Principle Two–Intellectual Quality of Instruction and Meaningful Access, where English learners engage in intellectually rich, developmentally appropriate learning experiences that foster high levels of English proficiency. These experiences integrate language development, literacy, and content learning as well as provide access for comprehension and participation through native language instruction, native language support, and scaffolding lessons in English.

ELD in Distance Learning

Pursuant to EC Section 43503, LEAs offering distance learning shall include integrated and designated ELD instruction. The following resources are available to teachers and administrators to support the design and implementation of integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learners in distance learning.

Distance Learning Instruction Planning Guidance
Guidance for distance learning instruction planning, including English language development for English learner students, in accordance to Senate Bill 98 External link opens in new window or tab..

ELD Distance Learning Frequently Asked Questions External link opens in new window or tab.
Features responses to frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding integrated and designated ELD in distance learning instruction.

Integrated and Designated ELD in Distance Learning

Support for Distance Learning: the History–Social Science and English Language Arts/English Language Development Frameworks, May 14, 2020 External link opens in new window or tab. (Video)
This presentation hosted by the California Department of Education Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division in collaboration with the Monterey County Office of Education and the California History–Social Science Project provides an overview of how the state-adopted curriculum frameworks in history–social science and ELA/ELD can support teachers and administrators in implementing a distance learning instructional program.

Considerations for Inclusivity and Support within Designated ELD in Remote Learning External link opens in new window or tab.
This tool is designed for teachers in planning, delivering, and reflecting upon distance learning lessons to maintain and enhance designated ELD instruction.

Sanger Learns Designated ELD External link opens in new window or tab.
This Sanger Unified School District web page contains links to “model choice boards” that support ELD instruction for English learners during distance learning.

Distance Learning Units of Study External link opens in new window or tab.
The San Diego County Office of Education offers distance learning units of study for kindergarten through grade 12 focused on grade level essential learnings in content areas: ELA, ELD, mathematics, science, history/social science, arts, computer science, and physical education through integrated study in kindergarten through grade five and thematic units in grades six through high school.

Designated ELD Lesson Planning Template External link opens in new window or tab.
Template for planning designated ELD lessons.

ELA and ELD Online Learning Resources External link opens in new window or tab.
ELA and ELD online learning resources compiled by the Curriculum and Instruction Steering Committee ELA/ELD Subcommittee members.

ELD Distance Learning Webinars

Distance Learning: ELD and Dual Language Instruction
The CDE presented and recorded this webinar on Distance Learning: English Language Development and Dual Language Instruction on May 14, 2020, as part of the CDE Distance Learning Series.

Distance Learning Series
Series of distance learning webinars on various topics related to changes due to Covid-19.

Considerations for English Learners and Online Learning External link opens in new window or tab.
The San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools (SBCSS) recorded a webinar highlighting how LEAs can support English learner students with online learning. The webinar takes the Sobrato Early Academic Language article by Heather Skibbins, ”Six Considerations for Supporting English Learners with Distance Learning External link opens in new window or tab. ,” and breaks each of the six components down, providing practical resources that support educators at each step. The SBCSS webinar slides External link opens in new window or tab. are also available.

Facilitating Secondary ELA English Learners’ Oral Language Development While Engaging in Distance Learning External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar provides tangible tools and processes for supporting oral interactions and language development of secondary ELA students in distance learning environments that promote literacy development.

Supporting Secondary English Learners in the Science Classroom External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar provides science teacher with ideas and activities for developing English learner students’ oral language by interacting with peers and engaging in the learning and doing of science and engineering.

Analyzing Texts in Grades 3–5: The Development of Oral Language in a Distance Learning Environment External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar provides upper elementary teachers ideas and activities to support 3rd through 5th grade students’ oral language development by asking questions that promote student analysis of a text’s key themes in distance learning environments.

Supporting Secondary English Learners in the Social Studies Classroom in a Distance Learning Environment External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar supports teachers to make lessons more accessible to English Learner students by integrating the use of carefully selected multimodal texts such as historical maps, photographs, and video into the design of lessons.

Linking, Describing, and Critiquing in Secondary Mathematics: Supporting English Learners’ Oral Language Development External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar supports teacher to design content-specific learning experiences that promote oral language development in distance learning environments.

Effective Questioning in Grades K–2: The Development of Oral Language in a Distance Learning Environment External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar features effective questioning techniques that teachers can use to design activities for distance learning environments that promote text-based discussions.

Lesson Planning for English Learners in Distance Learning Environments: Elementary Educators External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar demonstrates how elementary educators can adapt and implement lessons in a distance learning environment to support English Learner students and language development.

Lesson Planning for English Learners in Distance Learning Environments: Secondary Educators External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar demonstrates how secondary educators can adapt and implement lessons in a distance learning environment that promote rigor and high levels of support. It features how to plan appropriate scaffolds for students engaging with subject-matter content in synchronous, asynchronous, and no-tech environments.

How to Support Young English Learners at Home with Language and Literacy Development External link opens in new window or tab.
This archived webinar provides teachers, coaches, and administrators guidance, resources, and activities that can be shared with families and caregivers to strengthen language and literacy development with English Learners at home.

Webinar Series: Supporting Multilingual and English Learners During Distance Learning External link opens in new window or tab.
Sponsored by the Region 15 Comprehensive Center at WestEd, in collaboration with the California Teachers Association, and the CDE, this webinar series addresses the ways educators can support multilingual and English learner students in distance learning.

Professional Learning Resources

These resources were developed by the California Department of Education (CDE) and outside agencies to assist educators implement the California ELD Standards and enhance integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learner students.

CDE Resources

The Professional Learning Modules (PLMs) are designed to support educators in delivering curriculum aligned to the California State Standards. The PLMs include the CA ELD Standards in the ELD instructional practice. The CA ELD Standards PLMs provide guidance for using the CA ELD Standards in tandem with the California State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies (ELA), Science, and Technical Subjects (ELA/Literacy), and other content standards.

The California English Language Development Standards: Getting Started External link opens in new window or tab.
These PLMs are designed to provide an orientation to the CA ELD Standards, ideas for implementing the standards in different contexts, and in tandem with the ELA/Literacy, and opportunities to apply learning and reflect on instructional practice.

A Deeper Dive into the California English Language Development Standards External link opens in new window or tab.
These PLMs are designed to provide deeper learning about implementing the CA ELD Standards in elementary, middle, and high school classrooms, guidance on implementing the standards in tandem with the ELA/Literacy, and opportunities for teachers to reflect on their instructional practices.

Integrated and Designated ELD

Click on the Integrated–Designated ELD tab to find these and other resources that support teachers and administrators to design, implement, and enhance integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learner students.

Integrated and Designated ELD Video Series

Click on the ELD Video Series tab to find the videos demonstrating designated ELD and integrated ELD instruction for ELA, mathematics, and science in transitional kindergarten/kindergarten through grade twelve.

Implementation Support for the ELA/ELD Framework
Collection of resources supports the implementation of the ELA/ELD Framework.

ELA and ELD Implementation Support Videos
These videos are compiled from those posted on the Implementation Support for the ELA/ELD Framework web page. They are further organized by key theme and area of focus. These select videos support the related guidance in the ELA/ELD Framework

Other Resources

Blueprint for Effective Leadership and Instruction for our English Learners' Future (B.E.L.I.E.F.) External link opens in new window or tab.
The B.E.L.I.E.F. Professional Learning Modules support district and site administrators with implementation of both integrated and designated ELD. The modules include current ELD research; opportunities to deepen understanding of integrated and designated ELD; activities to analyze, reflect upon, and refine programs for English learner students; and follow-up activities to use with staff to support implementation. The modules were developed by the Curriculum and Instruction Steering Committee (CISC) ELA/ELD CISC Subcommittee.

English Learner Toolkit of Strategies, Volume 1 External link opens in new window or tab.
This toolkit includes a resource for teachers to help English learner students accomplish particular learning goals. The toolkit provides high leverage strategies to increase English language proficiency in both integrated and designated ELD. It addresses reading, writing, listening, and speaking for literacy in the twenty-first century, connects to task types found in the English Language Proficiency Assessment for California, and provides a checklist that includes strategies for word, sentence, and text level understanding. The toolkit was developed by the CISC ELA/ELD CISC Subcommittee ELD Workgroup.

Strategies for ELD External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
Collection of ELD strategies that includes a description and example for each strategy. This Collection of ELD Strategies was compiled by the Tulare County Office of Education from the snapshots and vignettes within the ELA/ELD Framework.

ELD Instructional Resources

The following resources are available to support teachers and administrators design, implement, and enhance integrated and designated ELD instruction for English learner students in ELA, mathematics, science, and other content areas.

English Language Development

English Parent/Guardian ELD Overview Brochures External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
Spanish Parent/Guardian ELD Overview Brochures External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
These brochures explain the CA ELD Standards to parents/guardians, providing insights into what students will learn and highlighting the progression from kindergarten through grade twelve.

Implementation Support for the ELA/ELD Framework
Collection of resources that support the implementation of the ELA/ELD Framework.

ELA and ELD Implementation Support Videos
These videos are compiled from those posted on the Implementation Support for the ELA/ELD Framework web page. They are further organized by key theme and area of focus. These select videos support the related guidance in the ELA/ELD Framework.

Supporting Content Learning in the Secondary Classroom through Literacy: Resources for Science, Mathematics, History/Social Science, ELD, and ELA External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
An abbreviated list of high‐utility resources was compiled to support teachers of grades six through twelve in all content areas to develop their students’ literacy skills. It is organized into four categories: Web sites, video‐based resources, books, and additional resources.

Additional CDE Resources

eStandards—English Language Development External link opens in new window or tab.
eStandards is designed to provide quick and easy access to California's state content standards.

Spanish Language Development Standards
The Spanish Language Development Standards are the Spanish translation of the CA ELD Standards with linguistic augmentations.

California Practitioners’ Guide for Educating English Learners with Disabilities
This document includes guidance and other resources for identifying, assessing, supporting, and reclassifying English learner students with disabilities.

Clearinghouse for Multilingual Documents
The Clearinghouse for Multilingual Documents is a secure database to assist LEA staff in locating parent notification documents translated into non-English languages.

California State Content Standards

English Language Development Standards (PDF)
The CA ELD Standards, when used in tandem with state content standards, assist English learner students in building English proficiency, refining the academic use of English, and provides them access to subject area content.

English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects Standards (PDF)
The ELA/Literacy Standards help ensure that all students are literate and college- and career-ready no later than the end of high school. The ELA/Literacy Standards set requirements not only for ELA, but also for literacy in history/social studies, science, and technical subjects. Just as students must learn to read, write, speak, listen, and use language effectively in a variety of content areas, so too must the standards specify the literacy skills and understandings required for college- and career-readiness in multiple disciplines.

Next Generation Science Standards for California
The Next Generation Science Standards were developed to prepare California students to be future citizens and future scientist.

California State Standards for Mathematics (PDF)
The CA Mathematics Standards are designed to be robust, linked within and across grades, and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that young people will need for success in college and careers.

Content Standards
Content standards were designed to encourage the highest achievement of every student, by defining the knowledge, concepts, and skills that students should acquire at each grade level in mathematics, science, history-social science, visual and performing arts, world language, computer science, health education, and others.

Curriculum Frameworks

English Language Arts/English Language Development Framework External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
The 2014 ELA/ELD Framework was developed to support and incorporate the ELA/Literacy and the CA ELD Standards for implementation of these interrelated Standards. The SBE adopted the ELA/ELD Framework in 2014.

Science Framework
The 2016 Science Framework was developed to support the implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards.

Mathematics Framework
The 2013 Mathematics Framework supports the implementation of the CA Mathematics Standard’s goals by emphasizing mathematical instruction and learning that focus on key topics, build mathematical understanding and fluency in a coherent manner, and develop students’ ability to apply mathematics creatively to analyze and solve complex problems.

All Curricular Frameworks
The SBE-adopted curricular frameworks for mathematics, science, history-social science, visual and performing arts, world languages, career technical education, health education, and other content areas.

California English Learner Roadmap Policy

CA English Learner Roadmap Policy
The CA EL Roadmap SBE Policy: Educational Program and Services for English Learners explicitly focuses on English learner students in the context of the state’s efforts to improve the educational system, the quality of teaching and learning, and educational outcomes. It centers on standards, curriculum frameworks, assessment, accountability and school improvement, educator quality, early childhood and preschool, social and family support services, parent and community involvement, and higher education. Its purpose is to promote local capacity-building and continuous improvement in each of these areas and their interrelationship, based on evidence of effectiveness from local experience as well as the most current rigorous research evidence that speaks to the strengths and needs of the diverse population of English learner students.

CDE Publications

The 2010 CDE publication, Improving Education for English Learners: Research-Based Approaches, assists school districts in the design, implementation, and evaluation of programs for English learner students. It also assists educators in addressing the instructional needs of English learner students and to support the implementation of ELD, as well as the subject-matter standards and frameworks. This publication is available for purchase on the CDE Press Online Ordering web page.

State and Federal Legal Citations

California Education for a Global Economy Initiative (CA Ed.G.E.)—Proposition 58External link opens in new window or tab.
School districts and county offices of education will solicit input on, and provide to students, effective and appropriate instructional methods, including, but not limited to, establishing language acquisition programs, as defined in EC Section 306. This requirement is intended to ensure that all students, including English learners and native speakers of English, have access to the core academic content standards, including the English language development standards, as applicable, and become proficient in English.

Lau v Nichols 1974External link opens in new window or tab.
The United States (U.S.) Supreme Court ruled in 1974 to affirm the rights of English learners to have equal access to a meaningful education. The civil rights of the class of students were violated by not being granted access to (1) English language development programs nor to, (2) meaningful access to the curriculum. Most importantly, equality in this case meant providing a program appropriate and targeted to the needs of English learners, and not just the same as what is provided to native speakers of English. 

Castañeda v Pickard 1981External link opens in new window or tab.
Local educational agencies enrolling English learner students have a dual obligation to provide a program for English learners designed to overcome language barriers and provide access to the core curriculum (Castañeda v. Pickard 648 F.2d 989, [5th Cir. 1981]). This court ruling defines appropriate programming for English learners. The three prongs of the Castañeda ruling ask that the policies and practices adopted by a school or district be (1) based on sound educational theory, (2) implemented with sufficient rigor, and (3) demonstrate evidence of effectiveness in overcoming the language barriers and recouping any academic deficits incurred within a reasonable period of time.

Plyler v Doe 1982External link opens in new window or tab.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1982 that Texas statutes that denied public school enrollment and withheld state funds from local school districts for children “illegally admitted” to the United States was unconstitutional. The Texas statutes violated the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which protects “any person,” not just “any citizen.” Because the Plyler decision applies to every state and is still valid, the same test of constitutionality applies to any state law that conditions school attendance on citizenship.

California Code of Regulations

IdentificationExternal link opens in new window or tab.
Local educational agencies must identify English learner students in need of language assistance in a timely manner.

CA Ed.G.E. Initiative—Proposition 58
The CA Ed.G.E. Initiative (Proposition 58) ensures that all children in California public schools receive the highest quality education, master the English language, and access high-quality, innovative, and evidence-based language programs that prepare them to fully participate in a global economy. The CA Ed.G.E. Initiative authorizes school districts and county offices of education to establish language acquisition programs for both native and non-native English speakers, and requires school districts and county offices of education to solicit parent and community input in developing language acquisition programs.

Questions:   Language Policy and Leadership Office | 916-319-0845
Last Reviewed: Tuesday, September 22, 2020
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