Robbinsdale Area Schools

English Language Learners

Robbinsdale Area Schools serves a diverse student population from a rich array of cultural and linguistic backgrounds.  We are committed to ensuring an equitable and respectful educational experience for every student, focusing on strengths related to culture, ethnicity, first language, and national origin, among others.  

We expect high intellectual performance from all our students.  ELs, like all students, are expected to meet the rigorous challenges of state academic standards.  EL students are learning the language of English at the same time they are learning academic content and developing a full range of cognitive skills.  EL achievement is a shared responsibility with teachers collaborating to design effective instruction for language and literacy development across all content areas.  Teachers and administrators work together to engage parents in preparing students for success and to positively contribute to their community.


Julie Sonnek, Multilingual Coordinator | 763-504-8109


Instructional Models

At every grade level, schools may have students with a wide range of English proficiency levels and academic experiences.  To address the complexity of these needs, RAS is using a collaborative approach to provide a coherent and cohesive learning experience for ELs to meet academic standards.  EL teachers teach language through content, collaborating with content teachers and addressing standards in a variety of ways to meet student needs.  For more advanced levels of proficiency, students are co-taught to the extent possible.

EL Identification Procedure

  • Families who are new to the Robbinsdale school district fill out the Minnesota Home Language Survey. If the Minnesota Home Language Survey indicates that the student uses or has experienced a language other than English or a language variety of English such as English Creole, Liberian English, etc., the student will be screened using an English language proficiency assessment. Alternatively, assessment results from another district may be used if dated within a year.
  • Students in grades K-12 are screened with the WIDA Screener Online.
  • Families may be referred to the Enrollment Center at the Education Service Center to have their student screened.

EL Exit Procedures

In order for a student to exit the EL program, the student will take the WIDA Access for ELLs 2.0 annually.  They must meet the following requirements to exit the program:

  • Access composite score of 4.5 or higher
  • All domains (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) of 3.5 or higher