American Lakes Elementary, School Program

American Lakes Elementary is just one of the eight elementary schools in the Natomas Unified School District. Total enrollment for American Lakes Elementary (ALE) is 494 students. The total number of English learner students at ALE: 140 (28% of the student body).

Suzen Holtemann is the principal and American Lakes Elementary (ALE). She is former a bilingual teacher and is very dedicated to the English learner population at her school.

In this first clip, Suzen discusses the specific model of ELD instruction that is offered at the school. Notice her description of the small group opportunities for students to receive instruction.

Suzen talks about how important it is to use appropriate and accurate data to place students into ELD instruction. Here, she talks about the process that the teachers at the school take when creating groupings for ELD classes.

In the next clip, Suzen discusses the programs and supports that are offered to parents and families at the elementary school. Suzen shares about a program that the district offers called Parent CORES. See more information about that program, here:

Rosa Torres also plays an integral role at American Lakes Elementary. She is the English learner Lead Teacher and works to support both parents and teachers, as well as students as they work to attain English proficiency.

In the following two videos, Rosa talks about her role at the school. In the first clip, she discusses how she supports students to set goals and then communicates with both teachers and parents so that students might receive support. In the second clip, she shares how the school has become a place where parents feel more supported and engaged than before.

STOP and THINK: What are some ways your school supports parents of English learners at the school level? How might these strategies and supports discussed in the video be applied to your site?