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Champion of IDEAS From Ballard & Tighe Adopted by Phoenix-Area School District.

New Resource for Middle School English Learners Follows Structured English Instruction Requirements

PHOENIX -- Ballard & Tighe, Publishers ( announced today that Murphy Elementary School District in Phoenix has adopted Champion of IDEAS for the district middle school students who do not speak English as their native language. Champion of IDEAS is an English Language Development program that is comprehensive, systematic, and standards-based and addresses the content components for the Structured English Immersion (SEI) program.

From 1995 to 2005, the number of LEP (Limited English Proficient) students nationwide has increased more than 58 percent1. Today, English learners make up roughly 15 percent of Arizona's student population; there were over 155,000 students classified as LEP in 2004/052. With the challenges these students face in learning a new language well enough to succeed academically and with such a high percentage of LEP students in Arizona schools, the strain on district resources is clearly apparent.

Murphy Elementary School District recognizes the need for a systematic instructional plan for LEP students. "We need to pursue every opportunity possible to help our students learn English well enough to not only communicate from a social standpoint but from an academic standpoint as well," said Gloria Rivera, the ELD coordinator for Murphy Elementary School District. "Curriculum like Champion of IDEAS that teaches English with these factors in mind is a cornerstone of our English immersion curriculum."

Champion of IDEAS is particularly suited to SEI programs because it develops and refines social language and builds academic language proficiency through content-specific vocabulary and concepts, idiomatic and figurative expressions, and grammatical and linguistic structures. It is designed to teach students how to accurately and comfortably speak and write in English so that they can succeed academically.

"The highest quality of language and grammatical accuracy is the goal for English Learners using the Champion of IDEAS program," said Dr. Connie Williams, instructional consultant to Ballard & Tighe. "Because the method used in the Champion program is systematic and methodical, spoken and written language will not mirror grammatical gaps in learning."

Murphy schools will be using the Champion program including support materials, resources, and assessments. The program includes a combination of non-consumable student textbooks (Champion Reader), workbooks (Champion Writer), assessments (Champion Tester), literature books, and audio materials as well as a comprehensive teacher's guide with CD-ROM resources that lays out an instructional plan based on proficiency level.

National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition (NCELA). Retrieved July 18, 2008, from:

1) Arizona-G-05.pdf (Due to its length, this URL may need to be copied/pasted into your Internet browser's address field. Remove the extra space if one exists.)

2) GrowingLEP_0506.pdf (Due to its length, this URL may need to be copied/pasted into your Internet browser's address field. Remove the extra space if one exists.)

About Ballard & Tighe

Ballard & Tighe, Publishers ( has focused on developing products for English language learners since 1976. Ballard & Tighe provides testing, instructional, and training products and services to more than 3,500 state, regional, and local school districts throughout the United States and internationally. Ballard & Tighe produces assessment products, English language development instructional materials, professional development programs, and a series of unique social studies programs designed especially for English language learners.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 27, 2008
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