Transitional Bilingual Instruction Program Guidance
Multilingual Education Program
Washington State serves approximately 130,000 students identified as multilingual English learners. Districts implement transitional bilingual instruction programs, also referred to as English language development programs. These programs are guided by both state and federal laws, policies, sound educational theory, and effective, culturally responsive instructional practices.
The following documents provide guidance on required policies and practices for all TBIP programs and on required reporting for multilingual learners in the state Comprehensive Education Data and Research System (CEDARS) database.
The Washington State Multilingual/English Learners: Policies and Practices Guide outlines policies and practices for all district transitional bilingual instruction programs. The guide includes important information related to:
- Program Definitions, laws, and guidance
- Identification of eligible Multilingual/English Learners
- Services for eligible students
- Services for exited students
- Allowable expenditures for TBIP and Title III funds
- Family engagement and communication
All multilingual English learners who receive TBIP services, must be reported in the state Comprehensive Education Data and Research System (CEDARS) database. The following documents provide guidance and instructions on reporting requirements.
- Data Manual 2021-22
- Appendices 2021-22 (Appendix N for EL placement status)
- Reporting Guidance 2021-22 (Multilingual English Learners pp 108 – 112)
- WIDA Screeners: New and Updated CEDARS Reporting Requirements
- Student Data Reporting Expectations for non-ALE funded Remote and Hybrid Instructional Models for students (Information on Provisional status)
District TBIPs must provide English language development services and access to rigorous grade level curricula and instruction. The following documents provide guidance and resources for developing research-based instructional practices for multilingual learners.
- The Meeting the Civil Rights Requirements for Multilingual Learners document provides guidance on meeting civil rights requirements.
The Multilingual Learner Plan is a template that districts can use to document plans and procedures for all of the required components of a TBIP program.
The Guidance for Multilingual Learners in Open Doors Programs provides support for addressing the needs of students in these alternative learning environments.
During the pandemic, multilingual learners and families have been faced with additional barriers to receiving the educational services they need. The following documents provide additional information and resources for supporting multilingual learners in these circumstances.
- Reopening Washington Schools 2020: Guidance for Supporting Multilingual/ English Learners
- Best Practices for Using Technology with Multilingual Families
- Bulletin B076-20: Supporting Multilingual/English Learners and Their Families: Reopening Schools (9.17.2020)
- Bulletin B085-20: Supporting Multilingual/English Learners and Their Families in Distance Learning (10.20.2020)
- Multilingual/English Learner Individual Learning Plan Template
Toolkits & Resources
The Multilingual Education Program curates a collection of toolkits and resources to support districts in implementing effective, high-quality, transitional bilingual instruction programs.
- This toolkit is designed for practitioners who work with children in grade 5 and younger. The toolkit is based on a report that examines what research evidence reveals about learning English from early childhood through high school, identifies effective practices for educators to use, and recommends steps policy makers can take to support high quality educational outcomes for children and youth who are learning English.
- The English Learner Toolkit, updated with ESSA references, was published in 2015 as a companion to support the 2015 Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) produced by the Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, and the Department of Justice. Some chapters of the toolkit have been updated to reflect the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 (ESSA).
- The Newcomer Toolkit is specifically focused on newcomers to US school systems and is designed for staff who work directly with newcomers, immigrants, asylees, refuges, and their families.
This toolkit provides resources for gathering information about students’ funds of knowledge to connect classroom content with students’ cultural schemas and increase academic progress and student engagement.
This toolkit provides practical tools to support classroom teachers and other educators in conducting home visits as a means of increasing collaboration with parents of English language learners.
This toolkit provides resources for supporting academic language which is critical to school success for all students.
Professional Organizations & Networks
There are a variety of professional, non-profit, and other organizations and networks intended to advance the educational opportunities of multilingual learners.
Center for Applied Linguistics
The Center for Applied Linguistics is a private, nonprofit organization promoting access, equity and mutual understanding for linguistically and culturally diverse people around the world.
A non-profit organization with information, activities, and advice for educators and families of English language learners.
Chartered in 1966 as Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory, Education Northwest now conducts nearly 200 projects annually, working with schools, districts, and communities across the country on comprehensive, research-based solutions to the challenges they face.
NABE: National Association for Bilingual Education
National Association for Bilingual Education (NABE) [is] a non-profit membership organization…NABE’s priorities include: Improving instructional practices for linguistically and culturally diverse children; providing bilingual educators with more high-quality professional development opportunities.
TESOL: Teachers of English to Students of Other Languages
International professional organization for teachers of English with diverse on-line resources.
Understanding Language aims to heighten educator awareness of the critical role that language plays in the new Common Core State Standards and Next Generation Science Standards.
WABE: Washington Association for Bilingual Education
The Washington Association for Bilingual Education promotes bilingual/multicultural education throughout the state of Washington in every possible way, at all educational and legislative levels, and among all groups.
WAESOL: Washington Association of Teachers to Speakers of Other Languages
WAESOL, the Washington state affiliate of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), is a professional, non-profit organization whose purposes are to: promote scholarship, disseminate information related to ESL, strengthen at all levels of instruction and research in TESOL and dialects, cooperate in appropriate ways with other groups sharing similar concerns, serve members of the ESL community in the state of Washington.
Annual Reports to the Washington State Legislature
In state law, TBIP is a program within Washington's Basic Education Act - Chapter 28A.180 RCW(link is external). OSPI provides an annual report to the legislature on the Transitional Bilingual Instruction Program as required by RCW 28A.180.020.