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  • English Learner Education

    English Proficiency Benchmarks

    The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has developed benchmarks for attaining English language proficiency for English Learners (ELs). DESE will define and disseminate to districts each fall the English language proficiency benchmarks, or individual targets, for each student’s annual progress toward English proficiency. Meeting benchmarks means an EL is on track to attain English proficiency within six years of entering a Massachusetts public school. Some ELs will attain English proficiency before year six, while others may take longer. Students are not required to become proficient within a specific period, but research indicates that ELs typically achieve proficiency in four to seven years.

    • Benchmarks Executive Summary

    • English Learning Success Template

    • Guidelines for the Use of Benchmarks Toward Attaining English Proficiency

    Last Updated: December 17, 2019

    Contact Us

    Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
    75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

    Voice: (781) 338-3000
    TTY: (800) 439-2370


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