RBERN West Newsletter

January 8, 2021


News and Notes from Interim Commissioner Betty Rosa

In this publication, you can find details on other announcements and resources from the New York State Education Department (NYSED):

  • Board of Regents Advances Budget and Legislative Priorities and State Aid Request for the 2021-22 School Year
  • Board of Regents Adopts First-Ever Learning Standards for Computer Science and Digital Fluency
  • State Education Department Announces Nominees for 2021 U.S. Presidential Scholars Program
  • $6 Million in My Brother's Keeper Grant Funding Available for Family and Community Engagement Programs
  • Write On, NY!
  • Content Area Notification Service
  • NY Project Hope Offers Free, Confidential Support to Help Navigate the Challenges of COVID
  • National Cyber Scholarship Competition
  • Content Area Notification Service

NYS Seal of Biliteracy

NYS Seal of Biliteracy posters available in 3 new languages: German, Italian, and Swahili.

We encourage you to print and share these posters in any of the languages represented in your schools:

English | Arabic | Bengali | Chinese (Simplified) | French| German | Haitian Creole | Italian | Karen | Korean | Nepali | Russian | Spanish | Swahili | Urdu


ELL/Bilingual Education Focus Group Series

4:00pm - 5:30pm

CTLE credits: 1.5 per session

This monthly series is an opportunity to learn, network, and share experiences common to teachers of English Language Learners.

Remote Learning Series

January 11, 2021 - Supporting Independent Tasks at Home

February 8, 2021 - Small Group Instruction

March 8, 2021 - Assessment

April 12, 2021 - Sharing Best Practices Implemented this Year

Closing Up the Year

May 10, 2021 - Green Card Voices - Student Reading and Book Signing

June 14, 2021 - Survey Day

NYSITELL Training (repeated sessions)

4:00pm - 5:00pm

CTLE credits: 3 per session

In this hybrid course, you will learn everything you need to know to successfully administer the NYSITELL from intake, to testing, to placement. In this course, you will learn everything you need to know to successfully administer the NYSITELL from intake, to testing, to placement. This course will take approximately 3 hours. Course work of the Pear Deck Presentation and Quiz must be completed prior to the Zoom Q&A session.

January 12, 2021

February 9, 2021

March 9, 2021

June 8, 2021

Multilingual Matters Book Club

A monthly educator book club to discuss rich topics related to immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers.

CTLE credits: 1 per session

January 13, 2021 from 4:30pm - 5:30pm

January's book is The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.

February 10, 2021 from 4:30pm - 5:30pm

February's book is Chance: Escape from the Holocaust: Memories of a Refugee Childhood by Uri Shulevitz

NYSAWLA Workshop Series

The first workshop in this series, Curating Authentic Resources for the World Language Classroom, was held on November 3, 2020 and attended by over 600 educators. Leslie Grahn, noted leader, presenter, author, and blogger in the field of world language education, returns for a second workshop in the series, Embedding Authentic Resources into Lesson Plans, to explore how to make authentic text work for teachers in the various phases of lesson planning.

To register: https://wlnys.wufoo.com/forms/znsiyc6166ehyi/

CUNY Bridges PD Opportunities

Please visit this link to see flyers for upcoming professional development opportunities offered by the CUNY Bridges Team. Please direct all questions related to their PD to admin@bridges-sifeproject.com

2021 Blossoming Bilinguals Virtual Symposium - CALL FOR PROPOSALS

This symposium is for educators of emergent multilingual learners in early childhood: Early childhood educators including pre-school and pre-kindergarten, as well as grade K-3 teachers, directors, and staff from both public and private early learning programs. Mid-State RBERN is accepting proposals for virtual presentations that highlight outstanding and innovative practices related to early education for ELLs/MLs in the following strands:

  • Early Literacy
  • ELLs with Disabilities
  • Parent Engagement
  • Social-Emotional Learning
  • Culturally Responsive Sustaining Education
  • Technology/Virtual Classroom Support
  • Content Area Specific Topics
  • Topics and Information for Program Directors
  • Additional Areas of Focus

Link to application: https://forms.gle/3aDc5WQfofbNoXdi8

Deadline for Proposals: Friday, January 29, 2021

Supporting Your Child’s School Success

Jewish Family Services is currently enrolling for their upcoming 6-week parenting series focused on Supporting Your Child’s School Success. Sessions will begin the week of Jan 18th and run for 2 hours once a week through the end of February; days and times vary. All sessions are free and will take place over Zoom.

Sessions will be co-facilitated with interpretation by trained Peer Facilitators from each respective ethnic/cultural community in






To ensure value for program participants, only 14 slots are available per language group.

Please share the multilingual fliers with families, https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1MG39FY7MJLX-DSuj78YaAjZ4wI7ZTKWz?usp=sharing

Big picture


Teen Health & Wellness: Supporting the Academic, Physical, Social, and Emotional Needs of Our Students

A brand-new resource! Teen Health & Wellness is a robust source of credible, straight-forward information on a variety of important, and potentially sensitive, topics. Subjects include the human body, diseases, developmental disabilities, diversity, drugs & alcohol, eating disorders, bullying, grief, depression & mood disorders, stress, nutrition, sexuality & sexual health, budgeting & money management, and much more.

Two Screens for Teachers

Having a second screen for remote learning has many benefits including improved productivity. Two Screens for Teachers is a an independent project sponsored by Donors Choose. Donors can buy teachers a monitor and teachers can request a monitor here.

15 Strategies for Communicating with ELL Families During the Winter from Colorin Colorado

How can schools ensure that ELL/immigrant families have information they need related to school closures and safety during winter? This article offers numerous ideas and examples of multilingual resources, with special considerations during COVID-19.

Resources from OBEWL and the ELL Leadership Council

The English Language Learner (ELL) Leadership Council is a group of approximately 70 English as a New Language Directors from around New York State (NYS) who meet regularly to discuss issues and best practices related to ELLs. This council has met regularly for the past five years to provide a direct line of communication between the Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages (OBEWL) and ELL administrators from the districts with the highest enrollment of ELLs in NYS. Within the ELL Leadership Council, five workgroups were created in response to COVID-19 school closures in the spring of 2020 to research and create resources to address the following issues:

  • Social-Emotional Learning
  • Compliance Advisory Council
  • Progress Monitoring, Feedback & Engagement Strategies
  • Strengthening ELL Instruction in Response to COVID-19 Closures
  • Adapting ELL Instruction in a post COVID-19 Learning Environment

ELL Leadership Council Professional Development

Review these free workshops, provided to the ELL Leadership Council this fall, on a variety of topics, including:

  • Virtual Engagement
  • Prioritizing Standards to Address Learning Loss
  • Progress Monitoring/NYS Seal of Biliteracy

New workshops will be added to this YouTube channel monthly!


NYSTESOL Recognition Award

Congratulations to Carlos Sanchez, Executive Director of the Hudson Valley RBERN at SWBOCES! This award recognizes officials who have acted as friends and allies to further the profession of TESOL and facilitate and foster the English-language acquisition of NYS students.

NYSTESOL Vice President of Finance

Congratulations to our colleague, Shawnna Sweet, Resource Specialist at the Mid-West RBERN, for her recent election to the position of Vice President of Finance for NYSTESOL!

Get involved with NYSTESOL by visiting their website!

Latina Herstory Education

...then I met Wilda Ramos. She was just what I was looking for and that’s why her story is our first LatinaHerstory. Wilda’s interview documents her distinct Latina educational leadership inside a system with a rich history of supporting bi-lingual and multilingual children, in her voice.

Read the full interview of Wilda Ramos, Language Assessment Coordinator for Buffalo Public Schools, here: https://theeducationalpledge.com/talia-rodriguez/

Image by Rafael Mencia Photo via nysabe.net

About Us

The Regional Bilingual Education Resource Network West is part of a statewide system of support, funded by the NYSED Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages (OBE-WL).

Mission: Collaborate with educators, parents, and community members to promote academic excellence and ensure high school graduation for all multilingual learners.

Vision: A community that provides access to an excellent and equitable education for multilingual learners that prepares them to be prosperous participants of a free and democratic society.