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EL Assessment Info

Lakeland School System is a participant in the WIDA Consortium, which provides ESL standards for our teachers to follow, an intake screener, language assessment tools, and additional information about student success. To learn more about WIDA, visit their website at

After students are screened by the WIDA W-APT or WIDA Screener for eligibility, they are required to take a yearly language assessment to determine their growth in English acquisition. This assessment is called the WIDA ACCESS test. The test is given in the Spring and results are obtained in the summer. Parents will receive a copy of their student scores with an explanation of how to interpret the results in the fall. Students receive a score in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. These scores are combined in various ways to obtain a score for literacy, comprehension, and an overall composite. The literacy and composite scores are used to determine ongoing placement and transition from the ESL program, based on the State of Tennessee cut scores. Lakeland has experienced above average transition rates for the past several years. 2017-18 WIDA ACCESS scores have been analyzed and 72% of LSS ESL students met the growth standard. Twenty-four students successfully exited the ESL program into transition status. The dates for the ACCESS testing window can be found on the District Assessment Calendar.

In addition to language assessments, students are also required to participate in TN Ready academic testing, regardless of their current language acquisition. There are no exemptions for students who have recently arrived from other countries and have little English skills. However, there is a process in place that allows three years of testing before these students’ scores are used for accountability purposes. The TNReady tests measure ability in language arts, math, science and social studies. These tests are given in the spring, and parents will receive a copy of their students’ scores in the fall.