Student, teacher duo start adult ESL class

Student, teacher duo start adult ESL class
Posted on 01/13/2020

Morganton, NC – Tuesday, Dec.31, 2019


Chelsey Taylor, an ESL teacher at Hillcrest Elementary School, and Luke Elliot, a junior at East Burke High School, have started teaching an English-as-a-second-language class for those wanting to learn the English language.


On Tuesday and Thursday mornings, approximately a dozen parents of Hillcrest Elementary School students drop off their children for school and become students themselves. In the class, they work through a workbook, create flashcards and start conversations with each other to learn the English language. The population of Hispanics at Hillcrest Elementary is approximately 85 to 90 percent.


Elliot tested out of a Spanish class at Western Piedmont Community College and volunteered to help Taylor out during his free morning period. He has a passion for learning and teaching different languages.


Elliot said, “About a year ago, my mother was talking to me about learning Spanish, and I picked it up quickly. I was conversationally fluent within one year, and I am now on my third language in Russian. My mother has always had a passion for (the Spanish speaking population) and it translated over to me.”


Taylor hopes that not only do the parents learn the English language, but are able to form a community within the school and feel comfortable with teachers and administrators. 


Superintendent Dr. Larry Putnam said, “The effort shown here by Mrs. Taylor and Luke represents how important it is to serve all of our students and form a relationship with all of our parents, even when a language barrier exists. I also applaud these parents for being willing to learn something new that will not only help them but also their children for generations to come. We have a great English as a second language program in our schools. It is important to us at Burke County Public Schools to break down language barriers and create a bridge to positive community interactions. This class is one of many ways we are making that happen.”


Student, teacher duo start adult ESL class
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