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The Pursuing Regional Opportunities for Mentoring, Innovation, and Success for English Learners (PROMISE) Initiative Research Monograph is comprised of four sub-studies that took place between 2006 and 2009 to examine the effectiveness of the PROMISE Initiative across six implementing counties.

Beginning in 2002, the superintendents of the six Southern California County Offices of Education collaborated to examine the pattern of the alarmingly low academic performance of English learners (EL) across Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino, San Diego, Riverside, and Ventura. Together, these six counties serve over one million EL students, more than 66% of the total EL population in the state of California, and close to 20% of the EL population in the nation. Data were compiled for the six counties, research on effective programs for ELs was shared, and a common vision for the success of ELs began to emerge. Out of this effort, the PROMISE Initiative was created to uphold a critical vision that ensured that ELs achieved and sustained high levels of proficiency, high levels of academic achievement, sociocultural and multicultural competency, preparation for successful transition to higher education, successful preparation as a 21st century global citizen, and high levels of motivation, confidence, and self-assurance.

This report is organized into six chapters: an introductory chapter, four chapters of related studies, and a summary chapter. The four studies were framed around four areas of inquiry: 1) What is the PROMISE model? 2) What does classroom implementation of the PROMISE model look like? 3) What leadership skills do principals at PROMISE schools need to lead transformative education for ELs? 4) What impact did PROMISE have on student learning and participation?

Key findings indicate that the PROMISE Initiative:

  • resulted in positive change for ELs at all levels including achievement gains and narrowing of the gap between ELs and non-ELs
  • increased use of research-based classroom practices
  • refined and strengthened plans for ELs at the district-level, and
  • demonstrated potential to enable infrastructure, partnerships, and communities of practice within and across the six school districts involved.

The final chapter of the report provides implications for school reform for improving EL outcomes including bolstering EL expertise in school reform efforts, implementing sustained and in-depth professional development, monitoring and supporting long-term reform efforts, and establishing partnerships and networks to develop, research and disseminate efforts.

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Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education | Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Language and Literacy Education | Teacher Education and Professional Development

Recommended Citation for Full Report

Olsen, L., Lindholm-Leary K.J., Lavadenz, M., Armas E.G., & Dell’Olio, F. (2010). Pursuing regional opportunities for mentoring, innovation, and success for English learners (PROMISE) Initiative: A three-year pilot study research monograph.

Pursuing Regional Opportunities for Mentoring, Innovation, and Success for English Learners (PROMISE) Initiative: A Three-Year Pilot Study Research Monograph