Guidelines for Identifying English Learners

The Ohio Department of Education is committed to establishing and implementing a standardized procedure for the identification of English learners. Ohio defines a student who is an English learner as one who has a primary or home language other than English and needs special language assistance to effectively participate in school.

Ohio’s public school districts (city, local, exempted village and community schools) are required to identify and serve students who are English learners. The uniform process begins with the administration of Ohio’s Language Usage Survey to all new students upon registration in the school or district. After identifying potential English learners with the Language Usage Survey, schools assess these students’ English language proficiency. A school employee then validates the survey and assessment results to complete the identification.

The Identifying English Learners in Ohio document guides school staff through the administration of the Language Usage Survey and the subsequent assessment of English language proficiency. Ohio’s Language Usage Survey (Appendix A) (translations available below) assists schools with the identification of potential English learners, as well as immigrant students and students with limited or interrupted formal education. Supplemental questions (Appendix B) are included and can be referred to by school staff to gather additional information about students during enrollment or at a later time. 

Appendix A: Language Usage Survey Translations

Last Modified: 12/8/2020 4:23:59 PM