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Here is an example from Washington state in the U.S. of what this looks like. In the table are shown data comparing ELL and nonELL student identification in Special Education categories. As you can see, there is disproportionate representation in specific areas while there is over placement in the specific learning disabilities category for ELL students. Additionally, the data for specific learning disabilities is shown in summary = 5.8% SLD among nonELL but 12.9% among ELL. This is disproportionate without some very outré justification like all of the ELL students were exposed to strange radiation prior to birth or some such.
Educators have become increasingly aware in recent years of the central role that culture plays in learning and teaching. Staff and students bring to the classroom values about education, work habits, interaction norms, and ways of knowing that were learned in the home and community.No one leaves their cultures at the school door. It is, therefore, imperative that education professionals gain greater awareness of how their culture affects their behaviors, and how the intersection of diverse cultures can impact classroom dynamics and outcomes.Culture is what people know, what they do, and what they make and use. Culture shapes the way we think (cognition), the way we interact (behavior), the way we communicate (language), and the way we transmit knowledge to the next generation (education). Everything we do is influenced by our culture. Culture pervades our ways of thinking, behaving, and believing. How we spend our time, how we teach and treat, how we test and measure, and what we do for fun are all affected by culture.Culture is always both (1) explicit – that which people can describe, such as foods, festivals, dress and (2) implicit - that which people know and do unconsciously and would have trouble describing.All cultural groups teach their children; however, how and what is taught (and why) varies considerably among cultures.
Cultural expectations and understanding underlie intervention focus and selection. Age and developmental appropriateness. The psychological adaptation of the learner in the school and the family and community context.
Excerpt from the book “Seven Steps for Separating Difference and Disability” , 2010, Corwin Press
Making RTI Responsive for ELL Families
Making RTI Culturally &Linguistically Responsive to Families Dr. Catherine Collier firstname.lastname@example.org