What's Different in the Special Education Assessment Process for English Learners?


9/6/2017 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

9/6/2017 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Wednesday, September 6
4-5 p.m. ET


** PLEASE NOTE: CEC will be performing scheduled website and database maintenance Sept. 5–6, to better serve our members and customers. During the maintenance period, you will not be able to log into the CEC member portal or make any purchases.

To register for this webinar between Monday, Sept. 4 and Wed., Sept. 6, please call Member Services at 1-888-232-7733 or email megans@cec.sped.org. We apologize for the inconvenience. **

As the number of English learners and bilingual/multilingual students continues to rise in the US, teachers and administrators are in critical need of appropriate and effective processes for assessing the eligibility of students with disabilities who are also English language learners. In this webinar, you’ll learn the latest updates on assessing English speakers in four areas: linguistic, cultural, legal & research. A process for distinguishing between second language indicators and learning disabilities is presented that embeds MTSS practices within the process of the eligibility decision-making process. Specific guidance will be presented on development of IEP goals that address English language development and academic needs for English learners.

After this webinar, participants will be able to:

  1. Understand the language learning laws and how these related to IDEA.
  2. Understand what processes should be followed in the special education evaluation process for English Learners.
  3. Distinguish between discriminatory and non-discriminatory assessment practices.
  4. Develop goals that addresses English learning with disabilities based on case studies that can be translated into your classroom.

Who should attend: Special education teachers, general education teachers, school/district administrators; school counselors; teachers-in-training; teacher educators


Claudia Rinaldi, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor & Chair of the Education Department at Lasell College. Her research addresses the implementation of RTI and MTSS in urban settings and with English language learners. She engages educators on how to improve systems and instructional practices for students with reading difficulties and those who are English language learners and who have disabilities.
Maria B. Serpa, Ed.D. has three decades of experience with educational assessment of ELL students with and without disabilities. Dr. Serpa is professor Emerita at Lesley University. She is co-author of several publications in assessment and (bi)literacy. Her research focuses on nondiscriminatory culturally and linguistically responsive assessment of ELSWDs biliteracy.