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Identifying and supporting English learner students with learning disabilities: Key issues in the literature and state practice

Because there are no definitive processes for identifying and determining the best academic placement for English learner students with learning disabilities, schools, districts, and states struggle with this issue. As a result, students are both over- and under-represented in special education classes, and their education suffers when they are mismatched with their academic program.

The findings from this literature and state policy review can be used by policymakers interested in developing procedures, guidelines, and protocols for identifying, assessing, and supporting English learner students who are struggling academically. The report describes the key issues in the research literature and current state procedures in the 20 states with the largest populations of English learner students.