Strengthening Equity and Effectiveness for Teachers of English Learners (SEE-TEL) is a five-year, $2.6 million National Professional Development Grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of English Language Acquisition awarded to Dr. Kim Song (PI, University of Missouri-St. Louis, UMSL) and Dr. Lisa Dorner (Co-PI, University of Missouri-Columbia, MU).
Goals & Actions
The main goal of SEE-TEL is to improve and equalize EL instruction and achievement across the state of Missouri by developing educators’ expertise on effective EL instructional strategies and family engagement. The grant activities emphasize equity and civil rights for immigrant and refugee children from across the highest-need areas of Missouri, a state that is often passed over for seeming monolingual (but it’s not!). From 2017 to 2022, SEE-TEL’s main activities include providing:
- Seven TESOL courses toward certification for 50 in-service teachers;
- Engaging Summer Institutes for 120 school leaders, teachers, and other educators;
- Annual workshops for 25 faculty to enhance how they prepare teachers for diverse, multilingual contexts;
- Resources for district EL Instructional Coaches and family engagement activities; and
- A quasi-experimental evaluation to test the effectiveness of SEE-TEL activities.
SEE-TEL works with an excellent team from a set of diverse school districts across Missouri, which brings a wealth of experience from across the world, including Korea, Japan, China, Ghana, Colombia, and beyond. Our school districts include:
- Bayless School District (Director of Title I and III, Kelly Klocke)
- Carthage School District (ELL Coordinator, Jana Sawyer)
- Columbia Public Schools (ELL Coordinator, Shelly Fair)
- Kansas City Public Schools (Director of Language Services, Allyson Hile)
The core SEE-TEL team for 2017-2018 included:
- Yang Ai, Graduate Assistant, UMSL
- Edwin Bonney, Graduate Research Assistant, MU
- Dr. Emily Crawford, Key Personnel, MU
- Dr. Sujin Kim, Co-PI, UMSL
- Dawn Thieman, Project Coordinator
- Dr. Lina Trigos-Carrillo, Post-Doctoral Fellow, MU
- Yuyang Zhao, Graduate Research Assistant, UMSL
And our key collaborators from 2017-2018 were:
- Dr. Denice Adkins, Associate Professor, MU
- Debra Cole, MELL Instructional Specialist (Missouri Migrant Education and English Language Learning,
- Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, DESE)
- Dr. Zandra de Araujo, Assistant Professor, MU
- Dawn Heston, Assistant Teaching Professor, MU
- Ryan Rumpf, Director of English Language Development and World Languages, Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
This grant allows SEE-TEL to more effectively prepare hundreds of in-service teachers, administrators, teacher education faculty, and parents to be responsive to linguistically and culturally diverse K-12 learners. This is critical to help Missouri meet increasingly complex needs facing our schools in urban, suburban, and rural areas. Most significant, SEE-TEL will offer seven online TESOL courses and certification to a select group of 50 teachers from four school districts. In addition, SEE-TEL will arrange intensive summer institutes to 120 educators and school leaders from these districts and beyond; training for university faculty members; and partnerships and literacy activities with 160 family members over the five-year grant project.
A program evaluation, led by Dr. Lisa Dorner of the University of Missouri-Columbia and Dr. Christine Li-Grining of Loyola University-Chicago, will study the long-term impact of the professional development activities on participants and students.