If you live in California at the moment, one of the buzzwords across the community college system is acceleration, especially with the recent passing of AB705. Over the past few years, a movement centered around the redesign of remedial coursework has been gaining traction thanks to the hard work of Katie Hern, Myra Snell, and others. The initial question of “Why do so many capable students never finish and simply disappear” has led to subsequent research and a rethinking of how we view remedial English, ESL, and math courses and the students in them. Although this movement is centered on California Community Colleges, the ideas put forward are relevant to anyone in education to help you reflect on and improve the following three areas.
Although the acceleration movement has been going on in English and math for a number of years, its application in ESL classrooms is still something that is being figured out and piloted. Acceleration brings a lot of positive changes. However, it has also raised a lot of questions in regards to its implementation in ESL programs. What are the best models for ESL? Will an accelerated model work for all students? What about students who aren’t wanting to transfer or get a degree? Join the Acceleration in ESL Discussion Forum to pose questions and talk to other faculty working through similar things.