Steve Amendum

Research grant will fund professional development to benefit English learners

Steve Amendum and colleagues from Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are seeking to develop a comprehensive teacher professional development (PD) program aimed at increasing collaboration between classroom and English-as-a-Second Language (ESL) teachers to benefit young Latinx English learners (ELs).  In the program teachers collaborate around a set of high-impact instructional strategies in language and literacy and work to incorporate students’ cultural wealth into classroom instruction.   The team has been awarded a 5-year, $3.3 million project, funded through a research grant from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) to implement instructional coaching at 70 elementary schools from 8 school districts in North Carolina.   Participants are ESL teachers and a team of kindergarten or first-grade classroom teachers from each school along with their students who are Latina/o English learners from schools in North Carolina.   Schools are selected if they have a population in which at least 10% of students are ELs; have kindergarten and grade 1 classrooms with at least three EL students each; and the administrators and a majority of kindergarten and first teachers are interested in participating.   In 2016, Amendum and colleagues were also the recipients of another $3.3 million IES grant to fund research into an early reading intervention program. Watch Amendum’s CEHD Talks video to learn what inspired him to undertake this research.