Letter to the Editor: response to FHS ELD article

Dear Phoenix,

I would like to respond to the article “FHS ELD suffers from insufficient resources” in the most recent issue of The Phoenix. The article effectively highlights several of the challenges that staff face when teaching ELD students. The article goes on to suggest that the District has not been providing adequate resources to support Fremont’s English Language Learners. I would like to share some information about what has been done in terms of increased resources in just the past school year in order to provide additional support for this group of students.

The amount of release time provided to the English Language Teacher Coordinator was doubled from 1 block to 2 blocks;

Eleven sections (classes) were added to support ELD – six EL sections, and five in Sheltered Subject area classes

For ELD 1, ELD 2 and ELD 3, we lowered class size by an average of 6.34 students per class

For our Sheltered Subject Area classes, we lowered class size by an average of 3 students per class

Over the past 18 months, we added two paraeducators to support our EL students

The above points represent an increase in over $400,000 in resources specifically devoted to Fremont’s English Language Learner program. This infusion of resources may not be sufficient or adequate to ensure the learning results that we desire. To that end, our district is deeply committed to continuing to find ways to better support English Learners. But the implication that the District has been ignoring the needs of EL students is simply not accurate. 


Tom Avvakumovits

FUHSD Associate Superintendent