ESL - English as a Second Language

ESL Teacher Handbook

The English as a Second Language (ESL) program is the specialized part of Adult Education which addresses the needs of Limited English Proficient (LEP) adults - including adult immigrants, residents, and citizens of the U.S. whose native Language is not English.  The ESL program offers instruction in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) which encompasses instruction in:

         Pre-literacy Skills

         Reading and Writing

         Listening and Speaking



         U.S. Citizenship

         U.S. History and Government

         Cultural Literacy

         Test Preparation for the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) and other college entrance exams

(For more information, see the WV ESL Handbook.)


The main concern of the ESL program is to help the LEP adults to communicate in American English in order to enter the American mainstream.  The ESL program in West Virginia is offered in various formats:

         Individualized or small group instruction for individuals or very small groups of LEP adults enrolled in general ABE classes or literacy programs seeking ESOL instruction; and

         ESOL classes groups of LEP adults enrolled in classes specifically focused on ESL and organized according to the participants' language proficiency level, topics of interest, or workplace or family literacy needs.

The English Language and Civics Education (ES/Civics) Program is a federal initiative to develop and implement integrated EL/Civics educational services for immigrants and other LEP populations.  Civics education as defined in the November 17, 1999 Federal Register means:


An education program that emphasizes contextualized instruction on the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, naturalization procedures, civic participation, and U.S. history and government to help students acquire the skills and knowledge to become active and informed parents, workers, and community members. 


Any questions regarding the AdultEd / ESL Program in West Virginia may be directed to:

Cathy Shank, AdultEd Professional Development Coordinator

1-800-257-3723 ext. 112


West Virginia Department of Education
Building 6, Room 230
1900 Kanawha Blvd. E.
Charleston, WV 26501
Phone: (304) 558-0280
Fax: (304) 558-3946
ABE Hotline: 1-800-642-2670