English Language (EL) & Gifted Services

EL Department Vision

English language acquisition and academic success encompassing high expectations and social development through rigorous coursework, ...... English Learners

Ermenia Tenpenny 928-608-4386
Carin Sam 928-608-4284
Program Description

The Arizona Department of Education approved four new structured English immersion (SEI) models to support the new language development approach (December 2019). The models main focus is ensuring all teachers share the responsibility to ensure success of the English language learners based on four principles; asset-based behaviors and expectations, integrated instruction in disciplinary language and content, targeted and explicit language instruction, and assessment, monitoring and feedback.

This approach is carried out through four approved SEI model options; pull-out model, two hour model, newcomer model, and 50-50 dual immersion model . At PUSD we are committed to utilizing the Pull Out Model K-12. We believe all individuals at every level within the educational system have an active role in ensuring the success and achievement of the over 150 multilingual learners who attend our schools.  EL students receive on grade level standards based education focusing on the Arizona Standards as well as the English Language Proficiency (ELP) Standards.  

EL and Gifted Chart
 The PUSD English Learner Department will implement, progress monitor, and make data driven adjustments to programming and services as needed in order to:
  • Design the EL instructional program; delivery, method of instruction and curriculum to meet the needs of English learners’ and increase student achievement on AZELLA and other state and district assessments.
  • Provide professional development to all teachers who directly interact with EL students in the district on the inclusion of  language expectations; and provide targeted and integrated instruction in the mainstream classrooms. 
  • Include parents of English learners in decision making, as well as increasing their agency and advocacy in their childrens’ education.
EL Proficiency Standards

In December of 2019, new ELP standards, with greater alignment to grade level English Language Arts standards were introduced. Beginning in the 2020-21 school year, teachers will begin implementing the new ELP standards. The AZELLA will reflect the changes in standards in 2021-22. For more information please visit the OELAS page on ELP Standards.


What is the AZELLA?
The Arizona English Language Learner Assessment (AZELLA) is a standards based assessment that measures students' English language proficiency based on the Arizona English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPs). The AZELLA is used for placement and reassessment purposes for students who are identified as second language learners. Students who are placed into an English language learner program will take the AZELLA reassessment once a year until they achieve English proficiency.   

Who takes the placement test?
The placement test is administered within the first thirty days of the new school year or two weeks of enrollment to new students who have another language other than English noted on the school registration form or Primary Home Language Other Than English (PHLOTE) survey and have no prior AZELLA test history.
Who takes the reassessment?
Students who have been identified as an English language learner and students whose parents have refused services take the reassessment. Refusal students are tested on the AZELLA until  English proficiency has been obtained. 

Family Night

Family nights are held at least twice annually. Family nights are designed to celebrate EL student work as well as engage families in their own learning about their students' education and their language needs. We encourage families to come celebrate their students as they share class work and new learning. Families also have the opportunity to engage in learning for themselves and network with other parents. Learning opportunities on how to bridge the home to school experience as well as how to support your students are also provided. We hope to see you all there. 

Parent Connections

Supporting Student Reading 


School Success


Student Resources 


History and Science Reading Resources (3-8)     


Current Events (K-12)


Classic Literature (K-12)


National Geographic

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/ (9-12) and  http://www.ngkids.co.uk/ (K-8)

Literature (K-12)


Science News for Kids (K-12)


Teaching Kids News (Current Events) (2nd - 8th)


Sports Illustrated for Kids (K-12)



Grammar Bytes


Learn English Teens


Fun Brain Grammar Gorillas 



ReadWriteThink - Student Interactive (K-12)


Interactive Sites for Grammar, Writing, Rhyming practice (K-5)


Guide to Grammar and Writing


Listening & Speaking

Grammar Snacks


PBS Listening and Speaking for Students


Randall's ESL Cyber Listening Lab


Conversation Models



Vocabulary Lists and Games, Daily Word of the Day - there's an app


Learn English Teens




Office of English Language Acquisition Services (OELAS)
Structured English Immersion (SEI) Models
ELP Standards