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In effort to turn around schools, Nevada eyes English language learners

from Reno Gazette-Journal

It's early one morning at Jay W. Jeffers Elementary School in Las Vegas, and Lisa Cabrera-Terry's voice is spilling from the first-grade classroom where she's reading about an illiterate grandma who surprises her family by learning to read. Cabrera-Terry takes a fat marker to a sheet of poster paper and adds to a wheel-shaped diagram of words that describe feelings. "If your face beams, you're sooooo happy," she said. "Why are they so happy about grandma reading?" To the untrained eye, the lesson is nothing unusual. But Cabrera-Terry is at a school where 83 percent of incoming kindergartners don't speak English, where you take every picture book page slow and where you tell students exactly what "astonished" means and explicitly that it's a word to describe a feeling. more


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