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English Language Proficiency

Contact Information

The Office of:

560 Broadway, Suite 1100 Denver, CO 80202

Phone: 303-866-6777 Fax: 303-866-663


CELP Standards Support

Morgan Cox
Phone: 303-866-6784
Fax: 303-866-6637

Purpose Statement

This site is designed to provide a hub of information regarding the Colorado English Language Proficiency (CELP) standards, academic language and resources to support the academic achievement of all Colorado students through language development.

CELP standards and academic language are supported through the Colorado Department of Education.

CELP standards are essential for English Language Learners to access all Colorado standards concepts and skills. Academic language is needed by all students to master the Colorado Academic Standards. Academic language is essential for preparing students in Colorado to become educated and productive citizens capable of succeeding in a globally competitive workforce.

On December 10, 2009 the Colorado State Board of Education voted unanimously to adopt the World-Class Instruction Design and Assessment (WIDA) standards as the Colorado English Language Proficiency (CELP) standards. English Language Proficiency standards are required by Colorado state and federal law. The CELP standards exceed minimum legal requirements. Overall, the standards center on the English language needed and used by English Language Learners (ELLs) to succeed in school. They guide all educators who teach ELLs and help students' access grade level academic content while learning English.

Understanding the Colorado English Language Proficiency Standards (a.k.a. WIDA Standards):

Other resources can be found at WIDA.

2010 Colorado English Language Proficiency Standards:

Resources for Teaching English Language Proficiency

Instructing English Language Learners is supported through a wide array of free instructional resources. This webpage lists just a few of these resources and will be updated regularly. If you are an educator in Colorado and have suggestions for a great free resource please email Morgan Cox.

Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL)

CAL is a private, nonprofit organization working to improve communication through better understanding of language and culture. Some of their many publications:

  • Using the SIOP Model: Professional Development Manual for Sheltered Instruction, 2nd Edition - Supports educators, at the school, district, and state levels, as they prepare teachers to use sheltered instruction to provide English language access to content while learning English.
  • What's Different About Teaching Reading to Students Learning English? - A research-based curriculum to help teachers work more effectively with the English language learners in their classrooms
  • Listening and Speaking: Oral Language and Vocabulary Development for English Language Learners - This professional development workbook and companion video provide knowledge-building, practical tools for educators working with English learners.

Mid-Continental Research for Education and Learning (McREL)

McREL is a private education research and development organization whose mission is "Making a difference in the quality of education and learning for all through excellence in applied research, product development, and service." A few publications:

  • Classroom Instruction that Works with English Language Learners - This resource applies the strategies from McREL publication Classroom Instruction that Works to reaching English language learners.
  • Classroom Instruction that Works with English Language Learners Facilitators Guide - An educator's guide for conducting professional development on how to improve the academic performance of English language learners.

¡ColorÍn Colorado!

¡ColorÍn Colorado! is a free web-based service that provides information, activities and advice for educators and Spanish-speaking families of English language learners.

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Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
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