A project of

Checklist for NYS ESL Teachers

As the name implies, what follows is a checklist as you prepare for a new year teaching ELLs. Don’t be fooled by the reference to New York State.  There are many points contained herein that are relevant and invaluable to ELL teachers everywhere. (Please feel free to submit your own for your region.)


  • Get NYSESLAT scores and SED cut scores
  • Identify proficiency levels for students
  • Send memo to guidance teachers of proficiency levels for fall scheduling with cc: to ESL Department Supervisor and Data Entry
  • Send home letter informing parents of level

New Student Registration

  • Give Home Language survey (Get a copy from Guidance)
  • Administer LAB-R — identify if necessary, make placement based on results
  • Administer DRP to confirm placement
  • Give HS orientation pamphlet, advisory book, and assign locker
  • Create a schedule with guidance
  • ESL survey (background info)
  • Set up two files for student (academic, portfolio)
  • Arrange for a tour with another student

First Week

  • Make copies of all student schedules
  • Correct any errors to student schedules with counselors
  • E-mail to Teachers re: ESL awareness (FYI to supervisors)
  • Make copies of bilingual glossaries for students
  • Make database of ESL students’ addresses
  • Get bus schedules (regular runs and after school runs) and post on bulletin board
  • See if interns are available for push-in classes for Beginner ELLs

Second Week

  • Memo to department supervisor re: New ESL students (info and scores)
  • Solicit student volunteers to help in advisory

Third Week

  • Sign up for NHS tutors
  • Confidential Student Profile sheet to Teachers with suggestions for teaching/accommodation/assessment, etc.


  • Monthly file sent to ESL department supervisor listing current students
  • Prepare for parent Meet and Greet (collaboration with local library)
  • Order translated exams for January Regents