Bilingual Education Exceptions and Waivers for English as a Second Language

Word Version

Action Required: Applications Due November 1, 2014

September 26, 2014

TO THE ADMINISTRATOR ADDRESSED:

SUBJECT: Bilingual Education Exceptions/Waivers for English as a Second Language

Districts and charter schools are required to identify students of limited English proficiency (LEP) and to serve each student through bilingual education or English as a second language (ESL) programs (Texas Education Code (TEC) Chapter 29, Subchapter B).

A district or charter school that does not have the appropriately certified teachers to serve LEP students in accordance with TEC, §29.054, must apply to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) for a bilingual exception and/or ESL waiver. This application must be made each year there is a need for an exception and/or a waiver.

Bilingual Education Program Exception: Districts and charter schools that are unable to provide bilingual certified teachers to implement the bilingual program in the elementary grades are required by 19 Texas Administrative Code (TAC), §89.1207(a), to request from the commissioner of education an exception to the bilingual education program and approval to offer an alternative program.

ESL Program Waiver: Districts and charter schools that are unable to provide ESL certified teachers to implement the ESL program are required by 19 TAC, §89.1207(b), to request from the commissioner of education a waiver of the certification requirements for teachers who will provide ESL instruction.

The 2014-2015 Bilingual Education Exception/ESL Waiver Application and instructions are now available on the TEA Bilingual and English as a Second Language Education Programs webpage at http://www.tea.state.tx.us/index2.aspx?id=4098&menu_id=720. All applications are due on or before November 1, 2014, and must be submitted to the TEA as an email attachment to: BilingualExceptions_ESLWaivers@tea.texas.gov. The district Bilingual/ESL contact person may complete the exception/waiver application, but all completed applications must be submitted to the TEA in an email directly from the superintendent.

If you have questions or need additional information regarding bilingual education exceptions and/or ESL waivers, please contact Susie Coultress, State Director of Bilingual/ESL/Title III/Migrant Education, at (512) 463-9581.

Sincerely,

Monica Martinez
Associate Commissioner
Standards and Programs