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When English language learners arrive for the first time at school, their English language proficiency needs to be assessed to identify student needs and inform planning for instruction. English language learners should also be assessed periodically throughout the year to determine how their language proficiency is developing. Occasionally, individual students may require additional assessment to identify if they have additional learning needs that may be interfering with their acquisition of language skills.

As part of this process, teachers can use the Alberta K–12 ESL Proficiency Benchmarks to establish the English language proficiency levels of each English language learner.

1: not evident, 2: emerging, 3: evident




Initial assessment process in place to gather information on the English language proficiency of English language learners new to your school.

Classroom teachers are able to use the Alberta K–12 ESL Proficiency Benchmarks.

The unique background of each student is considered during the assessment process.

Assessment materials used align with the developmental age of the students.

Cultural bias is minimized during the assessment process.

Processes are in place to gather ongoing information to assess and monitor language proficiency development throughout the school year.

The language proficiency levels of English language learners are communicated as part of the student’s progress report at each reporting period.

Processes are in place to gather more in-depth information when additional assessment about language proficiency is required.

School staff, students, their parents and community stakeholders collaborate to develop plans to support the English language learner.

School staff is able to understand and interpret diagnostic assessments and use this data to inform classroom instruction and identify supports an individual student may require.