December 2017

 MATSOL - Massachusetts Educators of English Language Learners 

Table of Contents

  1. MATSOL News
  2. Community News
  3. Links & Resources
Submission Welcome
Submit an item for publication in the monthly MATSOL E-Bulletin. Details... 

A New Era for English Learner Education!

On November 22, 2017 Governor Baker signed into law Bill H.4032 An act relative to language opportunity for our kids (LOOK bill) with the Seal of Biliteracy. The legislation was passed on November 15 in the House on a vote of 155-1, and unanimously in the Senate.

The new law allows public school districts to establish programs that best meet the needs of students, recognize the assets that bilingual students bring to our schools, and encourage increased language learning for all students.

MATSOL has long advocated for this change, and we are very excited as we look ahead to this new era in English learner education in Massachusetts. There is still a lot of work to do, but we look forward to working with our fellow MATSOL members and our colleagues in the Language Opportunity Coalition as new opportunities unfold to ensure equitable and effective instruction for all our students.

Please stay tuned for more information!


  • Allows districts to establish EL programs in addition to Sheltered Englsih Immersion (SEI), including Transitional Bilingual Education (TBE) and Two-Way Immersion (TWI).
  • EL programs shall be based on the educational and lingusitcis needs and demographic profile of the student population.
  • Parents may choose any available program for their child.
  • Creates a mechanism for 20+ parents to request that a district establish a new language acquisition program.
  • Directs ESE to create an endorsement for TBE and TWI teachers.
  • Creates an EL Parent Advisory Council districts with more than 100/5% ELs.
  • Establishes a state Seal of Biliteracy.

Find Out More


MATSOL Calendar

  • Dec 4: Proposals due for the MATSOL 2018 Conference
  • Dec 8: MELLC Meeting
  • Jan 8: MATSOL Conference Registration Opens

View MATSOL Event Calendar - information & registration

MATSOL Conference
Look for an announcement about the Pre-Conference Institutes and conference keynotes next week! Information about the conference is posted on the MATSOL 2018 Conference webpage

Conference Proposals due Dec 4
The deadline to submit a proposal for the MATSOL 2018 Conference has been extended to midnight on Monday, December 4. View the Call...

WEBINAR: The Seal of Biliteracy: A Massachusetts Model of Collaboration 
If you missed our live webinar, you can watch the recording on the MATSOLvideo YouTube channel! An introduction of the national Seal of Biliteracy movement and an overview of the Massachusetts Seal of Biliteracy Pilot Project, including the updated resources and experience gained from the third year of the pilot.  Presented by the Language Opportunity Coalition. 

Registration Open for MATSOL Spring Courses
View Course Catalog...

  • Massachusetts SEI Teacher Endorsement Course
  • Massachusetts SEI Administrator Endorsement Course

Community News

Jan 25: Rennie Center - Condition of Education in the Commonwealth
Join the Rennie Center for their annual review of the Condition of Education in the Commonwealth, featuring the release of our 2018 Data Dashboard and Action Guide. The Condition of Education provides a "state of the state" on key education trends, bringing together a wide-ranging set of indicators to illuminate areas of success and areas for continued improvement across the education pipeline. 8:00 AM, Omni Parker House Hotel, Boston. Register...

Multilingual Assistance from Health Care for All
The Health Care for All Helpline is the only statewide phone service that helps Massachusetts residents at all income levels with enrolling in health insurance coverage, answering questions about insurance, and troubleshooting cases. Counselors fully trained in all the state programs are available in English, Spanish and Portuguese. Open enrollment continues in Massachusetts until Jan 23. Please share these fliers with students and families! English / Spanish / Portuguese. Website: https://www.hcfama.org/helpline


  • Mar 24: 7th Annual Southern New England Conference for Dual Language Programs More...
  • Mar 27-30: TESOL International Convention & English Language Expo, Chicago More...
  • Apr 6: Mass Coalition for Adult Education NETWORK 2018 More...
  • Jul 23: 2018 International Systemic Functional Congress More...

Links & Resources

TESOL Connections 
MATSOL members receive free access to TESOL Connections, TESOL International Association's monthly online newsletter. The latest issue 
includes Preparing English Learners for College in ELT, The Language of Critical Thinking: A Sequence With Activities and LGBTQIA ELs: Teacher Assumptions and Student OppressionRead the latest issue...

ESL Model Curriculum Unit Videos
This series of videos are part of the Massachusetts Next Generation ESL Project: Model Curriculum Units (MCUs). Each video showcases excerpts from a lesson from an ESL MCU being implemented in an ESL classroom. View resource...

  • ESL Grade 7, ELP Levels 1-2, showcasing MCU: Access to Clean Water
  • ESL Grade K, ELP Levels 1-2, showcasing Lesson 10 of MCU: Emotions / How do I feel?
  • ESL Grade Band 1-2, ELP Levels 1-2, showcasing Lesson 6 of MCU: Animals and Where They Live
  • ESL Grade 1, ELP Levels 1-3, showcasing a custom MCU: "Family Stories."
  • ESL Grade Band 3-5, ELP Levels 3-4, showcasing Lesson 5 of MCU: Historical Perspectives
  • ESL Grade Band 3-5, ELP Levels 1-2, showcasing Lesson 4, MCU: Describing and Explaining Weathering and Erosion
  • ESL Grade Band 9-12, ELP Levels 2-3, showcasing Lesson 4 of MCU: Exploring Women's Rights

TESOL Community and Family Toolkit
Working with the families of English learners and building strong communities is one of the biggest challenges that many English language professionals face. Recognizing this, TESOL International Association developed this toolkit as a resource for English language professionals to use at all levels to connect with families and build strong communities. View Toolkit...

Beyond Teaching English: Supporting High School Completion by Immigrant and Refugee Students
From Migration Policy Institute: Immigrant and refugee youth who enter the United States during their secondary school years face a daunting set of challenges. In addition to learning a new language and adjusting to U.S. classroom norms, they must quickly fill gaps in their subject-matter knowledge and pass the courses required to graduate high school before aging out of the system. For some, the pressure to go from limited literacy to a high school diploma in a few years can be overwhelming. The supports these newcomers receive—either directly in schools and through the community-based organizations with which districts partner—have the power to shape these students' future educational and career trajectories. View report...

A Profile of Current DACA Recipients by Education, Industry, and Occupation
From Migration Policy Institute: With the rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program moving into full force in spring 2018, an average of 915 young unauthorized immigrants will lose their work authorization and protection from deportation each day beginning on March 6, 2018 through March 5, 2020, according to MPI estimates. View fact sheet...

Number of foreign students coming to US colleges drops
Massachusetts saw an increase in overall foreign students, albeit a smaller rise than in the past. In 2015-16 the number of students rose 7.2 percent, but it rose just 5.9 percent this past year. Foreign students brought an estimated $2.7 billion to the state economy in the 2016-17 school year. View The Boston Globe article... / View 2017 Open Doors report from Institute of International Education (iie)

Avoiding the Holiday 'Balance Traps'
From Teaching Tolerance: Many educators believe they are offering a balance when it comes to acknowledging holidays, but Christmas continues to receive the greatest emphasis. This excerpt from 'Celebrate!: An Anti-Bias Guide to Enjoying Holidays in Early Childhood Programs' can help you avoid this and other equity pitfalls. View resource...

View past issues of the MATSOL E-Bulletin online!


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