CAL provided technical assistance to the National Council of La Raza for implementation of the Bienvenidos Project. This project was designed to provide vital services to NCLR’s network of affiliate organizations. The affiliates support immigrants as they integrate in the U.S., helping them to become citizens and enabling them to participate in and contribute to every aspect of American society.
Teams from CAL’s Immigrant and Refugee Integration and Adult English Language Education areas worked on two key elements of the project:
- Development of educational modules on immigrant integration topics
- Development of a set of core qualities that characterize strong adult education programs
The educational modules were designed to be delivered by NCLR affiliates within their existing ESL programming to deepen participant understanding of the following four topics:
- Living in a multicultural society
- Learning about U.S. history, government, and laws
- Navigating public institutions
- Understanding rights, responsibilities, and community involvement in the United States
The core qualities cover multiple features and characteristics of strong programs, including curriculum and instruction; assessment; cultural proficiency; family and community collaboration; and resources. Developed collaboratively by CAL and NCLR affiliate representatives, the core qualities document lists indicators, measures, and examples of evidence for each core quality. NCLR affiliates are using the completed core qualities to evaluate their adult ESL programs in relation to recognized best practices in the field.
CAL’s work emphasizes contextualized instruction that integrates language learning objectives with content learning objectives, so that the immigrant integration modules fold seamlessly into affiliates’ existing adult ESL curricula and align with the core qualities of best practices in adult education.