Equity for English Learners: Evidence from Four Years of California’s Local Control Funding Formula
This study examined evidence of equity for English Learners-one of the three targeted student groups–in the early implementation of California’s Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) across data sets from seven studies. We used social justice inquiry methods and data integration analytic approaches that included purposeful sampling of districts’ Local Control and Accountability Plans (LCAPs), and data integration analyses of interviews with education leaders to examine how equity was advanced for English Learners. Our findings reveal that the quest for equity for English Learners is elusive and requires multilevel efforts to reverse the national, state, and local histories of unequal treatment, deficit orientations, socio-political dynamics, and legacies of unequal funding that still permeate many schools. Further advances in equity will require greater systemic coherence that sharpens the focus on educational outcomes for English Learners. California’s most recent policy shifts–including the passage of Proposition 58 and the English Learner Roadmap–show promise of systemic coherence and alignment to an assets-based approach for English Learners in the state and nation, as tangible evidence of equity in services and outcomes are still works in progress.
Magaly Lavadenz, Elvira G. Armas, Marco A. Murillo & Sylvia Jáuregui Hodge (2019) Equity for English Learners: Evidence from Four Years of California’s Local Control Funding Formula, Peabody Journal of Education, 94:2, 176-192, DOI: 10.1080/0161956X.2019.1598113.