A group of students, including K-12 English learners, walk hand-in-hand with their teacher.

Survey shows SEL is critical for K-12 English learners

Here's what teachers and administrators say about K-12 English learners in their districts

Most teachers of K-12 English learners say their students have lots of academic potential, but social and emotional obstacles could potentially stall these students’ progress, according to the English Learners Report from McGraw-Hill.

Seventy-five percent of surveyed teachers and 85 percent of surveyed administrators say they are optimistic that K-12 English learners can achieve academic success. A majority of both educator groups also believe English learner instruction contributes to their students’ improved academic language performance and overall English proficiency.

The research underscores the growing importance social and emotional learning (SEL) have in classrooms. SEL, while not a core curriculum subject, is frequently considered another essential part of learning because it helps students regulate their own emotions and learn how to respond to social situations and challenges.

Read more: How SEL inspired a transformation in my school

Despite challenges, a majority of educators believe their school or district provides sufficient ongoing professional development opportunities to hone their skills, which improves their ability to teach.

Seven out of 10 teachers agree their school or district provides sufficient, ongoing professional development to support K-12 English learners’ success, an increase from 55 percent in the 2017 iteration of this survey. Also, 76 percent agreed in 2018 that the training provided by their school or district improves their ability to teach English learners.

Laura Ascione

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