What all districts must have now

Both the No Child Left Behind Act and Iowa Code lay out school district responsibilities regarding the identification, placement, programming and services for English language learners.  There are specific documents and procedures that all districts must have in place whether or not English language learners are currently enrolled.  These pieces serve as a foundation to ensure appropriate identification and services are available to all ELL students in any Iowa district upon registration.

District Lau (ELL) Plan

The district’s Lau Plan (formerly the ELL Plan) is a very important document.  This plan spells out how the district will identify and serve ELL students from the moment of enrollment until the point of monitoring progress to ensure continued success after the student has been exited from the program.  Districts are held accountable for the actions included in the plan. During the document review phase of Comprehensive Site Visits, districts must show evidence of identification procedures (ELL 1), program placement options (ELL 2), and exit criteria (ELL 3) in the district’s Lau Plan.  It is crucial that the plan is reviewed regularly and revised to accurately reflect current district procedures.

Districts are required to use the Lau Plan Guidance document.  In addition, there is a Lau Plan Checklist 2016 that districts will want to use in alignment and check that all necessary components are in their Lau Plan.  The Lau Plan Checklist will be used to approve plans by the state.


Central River AEA’s two ELL consultants are available to work with district teams to support the process of reviewing and revising the Lau Plan.  In addition, the resources below are valuable documents teams may wish to have on hand for reference.

LIEP Processes and Procedures Flowchart (updated 5.15)

Title III Compliance Assurances Checklist for Districts

Title III of NCLB