Equipping Adolescent English Learners for Academic Achievement: An Interview With Susana Dutro and Ellen Levy


  • Susana Dutro,

  • Ellen Levy,

  • David W. Moore


Susana Dutro and Ellen Levy are leaders of E.L. Achieve, an organization dedicated to assisting educators in equipping English learners for academic achievement. They see adolescent English learners regularly confronting the challenge of developing the language needed to fully participate in middle and high school classrooms. Their approach to helping learners meet this challenge involves systematic, proficiency-leveled instruction in standard English along with explicit instruction in the discipline-specific language of core content areas. They provide numerous structured opportunities with oral language to enable English learners to develop and express sophisticated thinking. When implementing school-wide changes, they move from prominent to supportive roles as teachers and administrators assume control of the initiative. Implementing a shared vision of high quality language instruction for all adolescent English learners is seen as the most important step educators can take to best serve these youth.