HCPSS MPIA Request #2019-138

Requested Information
Please provide a detail description of the Newcomer program that targets students with limited English Proficiency. Please, included:
- When it was implemented
- When and why it was terminated
- Number and percentage of students served by year from 2000 to today. Indicated the number and percentage in each school year
- Criteria used to include a student in the program. Exclusion criteria to not include a student in the newcomer program. If we have a similar program today, please indicate the inclusion and exclusion criteria used now and the differences from the newcomer program.
- Student/teacher ratio by year from 2000 until the end of the newcomer program. If a new initiative is used now please, indicate the student/teacher ratio. Please separate the data by elementary, middle and high school and by year
-Number and percentage of students that moved out of the Newcomers program to the mainstream curriculum/school. Separate by year from 2000
-Number and percentage of students that move out of the Newcomer program and graduate in 4 and 5 years. Separate the data by year, starting in 2000.
- Number and percentage of English Learners that repeat once, twice, or more rimes algebra. Please separate the numbers by year, beginning in 2000.
Date Received
Response Notes

Under the MPIA process, and as advised in the Fourteenth Edition of the Maryland Public Information Act Manual created by Maryland’s Office of the Attorney General, an agency is only obligated to produce existing records and is not required to generate new data or summarize data. In order to extract data on student to teacher ratios and number of EL students who repeat specific courses from the HCPSS reporting system, a new query would have to be programmed. Per the MPIA GP § 4-205(c)(4)(iii), an agency is not required to program a new record if the type of data extraction requested is outside its normal course of business.

Responsive Documents
A 2012 assessment of the HCPSS Newcomer Program. Please note, as indicated on the cover page, this report was based on the Newcomer Assessment, which was a teacher-created assessment of English grammar, used only at the Newcomer Program. This assessment is not aligned with the WIDA Standards, which were adopted by the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) in school year 2011- 2012. That year, the ACCESS assessment replaced the LAS Links assessment as Maryland’s accountability assessment of language progress and attainment. In 2011 MSDE determined that LAS Links lacked the rigor to measure academic language proficiency, and was therefore not effective in predicting the ability of English Learners to access content instruction. The assessments referenced are no longer used in HCPSS.
A 2014 report, entitled English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Program Review. Please note, as indicated on the cover page, this report was initiated in SY2013 by the Howard County Public School System Division of Curriculum, Instruction and Administration to describe the state of the ESOL Program and identify areas of need. The information gathered was intended to guide internal improvement processes. Since the report, changes to the ESOL Program, including State exam and exit criteria, have occurred and the information reported may no longer be an up-to-date representation of the current ESOL Program.
Available data on the number and percentage of English Learners served and the number and percentage of students exiting the program per year. This information is available for the 2011-2012 through 2017-2018 school years. Please see the notes contained on the cover page of the file regarding information about the data. HCPSS has made substantial efforts to ensure the accuracy of this information; however, data collection and reporting is consistently subject to change. Please be mindful when comparing data as many variances can occur between reports based on date pulled, parameters used, categories included, etc.

*Some request language is summarized to include the requester's specific document requests and legally protected information (such as personally identifiable information of a student) or personal, defamatory and malicious content removed at the discretion of the school system.

**Responses containing legally protected information available only to the person of interest are omitted from the above report.

***Howard County Public Schools reserves the right to remove erroneous or outdated documents from this site.