BILL NUMBER: SB 754 AMENDED
AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY FEBRUARY 21, 2012
AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY JULY 13, 2011
AMENDED IN SENATE APRIL 6, 2011
INTRODUCED BY Senator Padilla
FEBRUARY 18, 2011
An act to amend Section
60810 435 of
the Education Code, relating to pupil assessment
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
SB 754, as amended, Padilla. Pupil assessment: California
English Language Development Test. Pupils: English
The English Learner and Immigrant Pupil Federal Conformity Act
requires a local educational agency to provide instructional services
to limited-English-proficient pupils and immigrant pupils in
conformity with specified provisions of federal law. Existing law
defines the term "English learner" for purposes of these provisions.
This bill would additionally define the terms "long-term English
learner" and "reclassified English proficient" and would declare the
intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would require the
State Department of Education to provide information regarding
long-term English learners and reclassified-English-proficient
Existing law requires each school district that has one or more
pupils who are English learners to assess the English language
development of each of those pupils upon initial enrollment in order
to determine the level of proficiency of those pupils and thereafter
to assess each of those pupils annually until the pupil is
redesignated as English proficient. The assessment primarily consists
of the administration of the California English Language Development
Test (CELDT) that assesses pupils in grades 2 to 12, inclusive, in
English listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, and pupils
in kindergarten and grade 1 in English listening and speaking.
This bill would prohibit a pupil in any of grades 3 to 12,
inclusive, to the extent permitted by federal law, from being
required to retake those portions of the CELDT that measure English
language skills for which he or she has previously tested as advanced
within the appropriate grade span, as determined by the State
Department of Education in accordance with specified law.
Notwithstanding the above prohibition, and to the extent permitted by
federal law, the bill would also prohibit a pupil in any of grades
10 to 12, inclusive, from being required to retake those portions of
the CELDT that measure English language skills for which he or she
has previously tested as early advanced or advanced. These
prohibitions would not become effective until the current CELDT
publisher's contract expires. The bill would also state legislative
findings and declarations regarding English learners and the CELDT.
Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no.
State-mandated local program: no.
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1. Section 435 of the Education
Code is amended to read:
435. For purposes of this chapter, the following terms have the
(a) "English learner" or "pupil of limited English proficiency"
means a pupil who was not born in the United States or whose native
language is a language other than English or who comes from an
environment where a language other than English is dominant; and
whose difficulties in speaking, reading, writing, or understanding
the English language may be sufficient to deny the individual the
ability to meet the state's proficient level of achievement on state
assessments, the ability to successfully achieve in classrooms where
the language of instruction is English, or the opportunity to
participate fully in society.
(b) "Federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001" means Public Law
107-110 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 6801 et seq.).
(c) "Immigrant pupil" means a pupil who was born in a
country other than the United States and who has attended a
kindergarten class or any of grades 1 to 12, inclusive, in a school
in the United States for three or fewer years.
(c) "Federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001" means Public Law
Number 107-110 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 6801, et seq.).
(d) "Long-term English learner" means a pupil in any of grades 6
to 12, inclusive, who has been an English learner for five or more
(e) "Reclassified English proficient" means an English learner who
has been redesignated as English proficient pursuant to Section 313.
SEC. 2. It is the intent of the Legislature to enact
legislation that would require the State Department of Education to
provide information regarding long-term English learners and
SECTION 1. The Legislature finds and declares
all of the following:
(a) There are 1.6 million English learners in California. An
English learner is an elementary or secondary school pupil who, based
on his or her standardized test scores in the four areas of
listening, speaking, reading, and writing, is deemed not proficient
(b) The California English Language Development Test (CELDT) is
the test used to examine English proficiency.
(c) The California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) determines a
pupil's eligibility for high school graduation and differs from the
CELDT in that it allows a pupil to retake only those portions of the
exam that he or she failed. Numerous other professional certificates,
licenses, and exams only require the test taker to retake the failed
portions of the exam. Examples of these professional certificates,
licenses, and exams include the California Certified Legal
Secretaries certification, the California Medical Assistants
certification, the California Insurance Agent license, the United
States Coast Guard License Examination, the California Cosmetology
License, the National Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners
examination, the Examination for Professional Practice of Psychology,
the Psychology Supplemental Examination, the Federation Licensing
Examination, the National Board of Medical Examiners exam, the United
States Medical Licensing Examination, the Architect Registration
Examination, and the Landscape Architects Licensing Examination.
(d) In California, a quarter of all elementary and secondary
pupils are classified as English learners. Fifty-nine percent of the
pupils classified as English learners in middle and high school will
fail to become English proficient in less than six years. Only 11
percent of pupils originally designated as English learners are
redesignated as fluent-English-proficient (FEP), meaning they meet
all of the criteria for English proficiency.
(e) English learners are classified or reclassified using four
criteria: the CELDT, teacher evaluation, parent consent, and pupil
performance in the classroom. FEP pupils are able to participate in
more rigorous academic courses and A-G courses, which are required
for admission to the California State University and the University
of California. Reclassification as FEP is important to English
learners to obtain necessary academic and college readiness.
(f) California sustains $46.4 billion in total economic losses,
equivalent to 2.9 percent of the Annual Gross State Product,
resulting from each cohort of 120,000 20-year-olds who never
completed high school. English learners, who comprise 15 percent of
all California high school pupils, represent 30 percent of all high
school dropouts. Thus, the share of economic loss caused by
20-year-old English learners that dropped out of high school is
approximately $14 billion for every cohort of 36,000.
(g) California will continue to sustain economic losses because of
a projected shortfall of one million college graduates by 2025.
Forty-one percent of jobs will require at least a baccalaureate
degree, while only 35 percent of working age adults are expected to
have that degree. California needs to address this degree deficit and
furthering the educational careers of English learners is an
important component of achieving this goal.
SEC. 2. Section 60810 of the Education Code is
amended to read:
60810. (a) (1) The Superintendent shall review existing tests
that assess the English language development of pupils whose primary
language is a language other than English. The tests shall include,
but not be limited to, an assessment of achievement of these pupils
in English reading, speaking, and written skills. The Superintendent
shall determine which tests, if any, meet the requirements of
subdivisions (b) and (c). If any existing test or series of tests
meets these criteria, the Superintendent, with approval of the state
board, shall report to the Legislature on its findings and
(2) If no suitable test exists, the Superintendent shall explore
the option of a collaborative effort with other states to develop a
test or series of tests and share test development costs. If no
suitable test exists, the Superintendent, with approval of the state
board, may contract to develop a test or series of tests that meets
the criteria of subdivisions (b) and (c) or may contract to modify an
existing test or series of tests so that it will meet the
requirements of subdivisions (b) and (c).
(3) The Superintendent and the state board shall release a request
for proposals for the development of the test or series of tests
required by this subdivision. The state board shall select a
contractor or contractors for the development of the test or series
of tests required by this subdivision, to be available for
administration during the 2000-01 school year.
(4) The Superintendent shall apportion funds appropriated to
enable school districts to meet the requirements of subdivision (d).
The state board shall establish the amount of funding to be
apportioned per test administered, based on a review of the cost per
(5) An adjustment to the amount of funding to be apportioned per
test is not valid without the approval of the Director of Finance. A
request for approval of an adjustment to the amount of funding to be
apportioned per test shall be submitted in writing to the Director of
Finance and the chairpersons of the fiscal committees of both houses
of the Legislature with accompanying material justifying the
proposed adjustment. The Director of Finance is authorized to approve
only those adjustments related to activities required by statute.
The Director of Finance shall approve or disapprove the amount within
30 days of receipt of the request and shall notify the chairpersons
of the fiscal committees of both houses of the Legislature of the
(b) (1) The test or series of tests developed or acquired pursuant
to subdivision (a) shall have sufficient range to assess pupils in
grades 2 to 12, inclusive, in English listening, speaking, reading,
and writing skills. Pupils in kindergarten and grade 1 shall be
assessed in English listening and speaking, and, once an assessment
is developed, early literacy skills. The early literacy assessment
shall be administered for a period of three years beginning after the
initial administration of the assessment or until July 1, 2012,
whichever occurs first. Six months after the results of the last
administered assessment are collected, but no later than January 1,
2013, the department shall report to the Legislature on the
administration of the kindergarten and grade 1 early literacy
assessment results, as well as on the administrative process, in
order to determine whether reauthorization of the early literacy
assessment is appropriate.
(2) In the development and administration of the assessment for
pupils in kindergarten and grade 1, the department shall minimize any
additional assessment time, to the extent possible. To the extent
that it is technically possible, items that are used to assess
listening and speaking shall be used to measure early literacy
skills. The department shall ensure that the test and procedures for
its administration are age and developmentally appropriate. Age and
developmentally appropriate procedures for administration may
include, but are not limited to, one-on-one administration, a small
group setting, and orally responding or circling a response to a
(c) The test or series of tests shall meet all of the following
(1) Provide sufficient information about pupils at each grade
level to determine levels of proficiency ranging from no English
proficiency to fluent English proficiency with at least two
(2) Have psychometric properties of reliability and validity
deemed adequate by technical experts.
(3) Be capable of administration to pupils with any primary
language other than English.
(4) Be capable of administration by classroom teachers.
(5) Yield scores that allow comparison of the growth of a pupil
over time, can be tied to readiness for various instructional
options, and can be aggregated for use in the evaluation of program
(6) Not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, or gender.
(7) Be aligned with the standards for English language development
adopted by the state board pursuant to Section 60811.
(8) Be age and developmentally appropriate for pupils.
(d) The test shall be used for the following purposes:
(1) To identify pupils who are limited English proficient.
(2) To determine the level of English language proficiency of
pupils who are limited English proficient.
(3) To assess the progress of limited-English-proficient pupils in
acquiring the skills of listening, reading, speaking, and writing in
(e) (1) To the extent permitted by federal law, a pupil in any of
grades 3 to 12, inclusive, shall not be required to retake those
portions of the test that measure English language skills for which
he or she has previously tested as advanced within each appropriate
grade span, as determined by the department in accordance with
paragraph (8) of subdivision (c).
(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), and to the extent permitted by
federal law, a pupil in any of grades 10 to 12, inclusive, shall not
be required to retake those portions of the test that measure English
language skills for which he or she has previously tested as early
advanced or advanced.
(3) This subdivision shall not become effective until the current
test publisher's contract expires.