The Roaring Fork School District recently appointed Basalt High teacher Sharon Moya to fill the district's recently created district post of English language learner (ELL) instructional facilitator.This is the first time the district has created such a position. It is an effort to deal with difficulties stemming from the district's rising population of non-English speaking students."Moya will focus on coordinating programming for the district's growing second language learner student population and will conduct a comprehensive ELL program review at each of the district's schools," said a statement issued by the district. It earlier this year formed a committee to deal with the same issue.Moya, according to the district, "has worked in language education for 39 years and earned a doctorate from the University of Florida in curriculum, instruction and evaluation for bilingual and multicultural programs. Her master's degree is in linguistics and English as a second language."She has been teaching ELL students at Basalt High for six years and has lived in the valley for nine years."She has taught ELL at every grade level from first grade to graduate school and has lived in seven different foreign countries," the statement said. "She has studied nine languages, including English, Spanish, French, Hungarian, Russian, Chinese, Catalan, Mano and Ga. Early in her career, she joined the Peace Corps and was sent to Liberia as an English as a second language teacher."According to Superintendent Judy Haptonstall, Moya will spend a couple of months going into the different schools in Basalt, Carbondale and Glenwood Springs, working with building administrators and teachers to evaluate the current methods of working with non-English speaking students.After that, possibly in October or November, Haptonstall said, Moya will sit down with district administrators and others, including the ELL committee made up of teachers, parents and other district personnel, to examine what should be done next in the area of teaching English Language Learners.The majority of English language learners in the district are Spanish-speaking immigrants, and the attendance area most affected by the influx is Carbondale.Efforts to contact Moya for comment on her new position were not successful.
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