RBERN West Newsletter

September 2021

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Welcome back from RBERN West!

The new school year has started and the words Welcome Back! seem at odds with what we have all experienced since the initial school closure issued on March 16, 2020. Each person had to take stock of the situation by figuring out what needed to be done on a daily basis to not only survive, but thrive in a worldwide emergency. We were RESILIENT in helping our students achieve. We SHARED our sorrow at the tragic loss of colleagues, family members and friends to COVID-19. Some reading this newsletter have recovered from COVID-19. Today, we have ACHIEVED the reopening of school. We are all still a bit nervous and cautious about planning the future, but we must stand up to our fears to start this new school year with the resolve needed to Welcome Back! the students entrusted to our care.

The RBERN West Team stands ready to help you every step of the way.


Denise Gonez-Santos, Executive Director


NYSESLAT Scale Score Ranges

The NYSESLAT scale score ranges associated with the proficiency levels for Grades K-12 are the same as the scale score ranges established following the 2016 administration. Please refer to this NYSESLAT memo regarding scale score ranges.

Please note that, in accordance with Part 154 of the Commissioner’s Regulations, ELLs can exit ELL status in the following ways:

• Grades K–12: Scoring at the Commanding level on the NYSESLAT

• Grades 3–8: Scoring at the Expanding level on the NYSESLAT and level 3 or above on the New York State English Language Arts (ELA) assessment taken within the same school year*

• Grades 9–12: Scoring at the Expanding level on the NYSESLAT and 65 or above on the Regents Examination in English Language Arts taken within the same school year*

*Passing the course without taking the exam and achieving the required score does not allow students to exit ELL status.

NYSITELL Printing, Scanning, and Scoring

If you are a new administrator and need access to NYSITELL printing, scanning, and scoring NYSITELL please visit WNYRIC Test Scoring Department for steps to set up your account.

NYSITELL Raw Score Conversion Charts

If you are looking for NYSITELL raw score conversion charts, they can be found here.


Our PD calendar, linked above, is updated regularly and has dates throughout the fall. We will alert you when we add new dates and events. We have some placeholders in our calendar so you know what to look forward to in the spring.

NYSTESOL 2021 Conference

Have you registered yet for the NYS TESOL 51st Annual Conference? This year's conference will be hybrid, with a virtual day on Thursday, November 4th and in-person days on Friday, November 5th and Saturday, November 6th at the Sonesta White Plains in New York (formerly the Crowne Plaza).

The conference theme is Looking Forward: Educational Empowerment and Transformative Education. They are offering three full days of workshops, plenary speakers, and practical sessions. This year will also have virtual, international site visits, an administrator ENL boot camp focusing on ENL regulations, and speed networking sessions. Plus, be sure to join for the dinner and dance party on Friday night! There is currently a LIMITED NUMBER of seats available so don't delay!

You have the opportunity to earn up to 6 CTLE credits per day of attendance. 2022 NYS TESOL membership is included with ALL conference registrations. Please share this conference information with anyone in your network who may be interested in attending! If you have any questions, please email pres@nystesol.org.

Register here

If you are a current NYS TESOL member, be sure to use the email address associated with your account in order to receive a discounted rate. You can also book your Sonesta Hotel room for a reduced rate using the code here.


Data Requests for Transfer Students

Outlined are the steps to inquire with WNYRIC at Erie 1 BOCES regarding transfer students NYSITELL and NYSESLAT data when you are unable to get this information from the former district.

Please submit the student’s NYSSIS ID number only (no names or other identifying information), as mentioned in step 2 below to WNYRIC’s test scoring department, testscoring@e1b.org, and they will try their best. Please note that when emailing RBERN West or WNYRIC staff do not include student personal identifying information (name, date of birth, etc).

The NYSSIS ID number can be found in different places, but the DDC (district data coordinator) of each district should certainly know where to find this number. It is in:

  1. NY State portal in the NYSSIS queue (https://portal.nysed.gov)
  2. Some Level 1 reports (https://dataview.wnyric.org)
  • Student Inquiry Report by Local ID
  • Student Enrollment Verification Report

Alternatively, the student’s local ID can be submitted to testscoring@e1b.org and the name of the district and school the student is transferring from. The test scoring department will do their best to answer your inquiry.

Procedures for Obtaining NYSITELL/NYSESLAT Scores for Students Who Transfer Between New York State School Districts

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Fall 2021 Raising Children in America parent support group series

Jewish Family Services' Raising Children in America groups will run in Tigrinya, Dari, and Burmese starting September 28th.

This series will be partnering with Buffalo Public Schools to begin facilitating this series out of the Parent Center at Lafayette International High School.

As always, all groups are free and open to the public. Spaces limited. Masks required.

Raising Children in America Multilingual Flyers

From Equity Insights to Action Critical Strategies for Teaching Multilingual Learners

Focused on the deliberate daily actions that all teachers of multilingual learners can take, this resource guide captures a compelling advocacy framework for culturally and linguistically responsive equity work, including

  • Authentic examples of how educators understand and support MLLs through an equity lens
  • Student portraits of multilingual learners’ experiences
  • Accessible answers to essential how-to questions
  • Robust professional learning activities
  • Access to print and online resources for additional information

SUNY Buffalo BXE Winter Intensive Institute

SUNY Buffalo State has successfully hosted both Summer and Winter Intensive Institutes in Bilingual Special Education. This past summer, they worked with several teachers from Rochester, Buffalo, and East Ramapo!

They will host another Winter intensive institute for teachers to obtain their bilingual extension. The program will be 100% online with a start date of November 1st.


NOVELny is getting a new look which includes a new logo and a new website. The newly redesigned www.novelnewyork.org site will be solely for access to the databases. All information about the NOVELny program, including the fact sheet, toolkit with logo style guidelines, Help Desk and registration information and more will be on the State Library’s Division of Library Development page at https://www.nysl.nysed.gov/libdev/novelny/.

There will also be a slight change in the NYS Newspapers database. It will be renamed The New York Times and it will only include that publication with both indexing and full text from January 1985 to the present. There will be no change in the Gale OneFile: News database. Any newspapers included in the current NYS Newspapers database will continue to be available in Gale OneFile: News.

All database URLs will remain the same. Links to pages on the current NOVELny page will need to be updated.

If you have any questions about the changes please email the NOVELny Help Desk at NYSLNOVEL@nysed.gov.

Provided by the New York State Library, NOVELny connects New Yorkers to 21st century information. NOVELny is supported with temporary federal Library Services and Technology Act funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

Critical Race Theory

The NYS Council for Social Studies shared the following articles related to Critical Race Theory. Please consider these sources of information as you explore this work in your districts.

What is Critical Race Theory? A Brief History Explained

A Lesson on Critical Race Theory

Critical race theory in the classroom: Understanding the debate


Wilda (Wildy) Ramos

Wildy has worked for Buffalo Public Schools for over 30 years in a variety of roles, including clerk typist, bilingual teacher, instructional support teacher, and most recently as a language assessment coordinator. She has dedicated much of her free time to supporting English language learners, including her work for the New York State Association for Bilingual Education (NYSABE). In addition to being a past president of the organization, she served as the conference co-chairperson under President Alicia Baez-Barinas. She helped lead NYSABE through two difficult years as they saw the cancellation of the 2020 conference mere days before it was set to begin. She worked with her co-chairperson and conference leadership team to transform it into a successful virtual conference the following year. Educators like Wildy, who work tirelessly to share their passion and talents, inspire us all to step up and share in her "do what it takes" attitude. Thank you Wildy!

Maria (Apple) Domingo

Apple has been a long time community collaborator with RBERN West. During her tenure at Jewish Family Services as the Manager of Refugee Services she has willingly shared her vast knowledge of immigration and WNY immigrant communities at ELL Focus Group and the 2021 WNY Multilingual Teacher Summit.

We are excited for continued collaborations with Apple as she enters a new role at Catholic Charities as the Director of Immigrant and Refugee Assistance Program.

Want to share the story of an unsung hero?

Email us your story and submit a picture so we can honor the contributions of our dedicated WNY educators, administrators, and community members in our monthly newsletter. Send all submissions to Mike Duffy at mjduffy@e1b.org

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.