DeAnna Coon is the Director of Adult Language and Literacy Education at CAL. She leads all of CAL’s adult English language learning project development and implementation activities, including sponsored projects for the Defense Language and National Security Education program. She directs the English for Heritage Language Speakers program, which enables naturalized citizens to develop professional proficiency in English as well as other related professional skills in order to obtain federal positions with national security responsibilities. DeAnna also leads technical assistance and assessment for an online professional writing program for federal employees conducted by the Center for Advanced Proficiency in English at George Mason University. She has also developed parent engagement and financial literacy curricula for national dissemination, and regularly develops and delivers professional development offerings for instructors in adult education at conference venues across the nation.
DeAnna began her career in adult education working with immigrant families in the Family Literacy program at Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School, and also advised students enrolled in citizenship classes on navigating the application process. She has worked in a variety of instructional and assessment positions in adult and post-secondary educational settings, including at Carlos Rosario, Montgomery College, the University of Maryland, and government and non-profit contexts. She also served as an English Language Fellow in Manama, Bahrain.
DeAnna holds a BA in Spanish and Latin American Studies from the University of Virginia, MAs in TESOL and International Relations from American University, and a certificate in Principles and Practices of Online Instruction. She is a member of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, the Commission on Adult Basic Education, the Maryland Association of Adult, Community, and Continuing Education, and Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages.
CAL is creating an ESL curriculum for adults based on the Padres Comprometidos program developed by the National Council of La Raza. Padres Comprometidos is a parent engagement program delivered in both Spanish and English that enables Latino parents to build strong connections with their children’s schools.
CAL is working with the Center for Advanced Proficiency in English (CAPE) at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) on a three-year project to provide online instruction in advanced English writing skills for federal personnel.
CAL designed and manages English for Heritage Language Speakers (EHLS), an intensive program that enables adult native speakers of critical languages to develop the English proficiency they need to succeed in professional positions in the federal government. EHLS is funded by the National Security Education Program and is conducted in partnership with Georgetown University.
CAL staff members have been working with the Bureau of Consumer Protection at the Federal Trade Commission on a variety of accessible language projects. These projects are designed to increase the FTC’s ability to convey essential consumer protection and fraud prevention messages to readers with low levels of literacy in English.