LA Unified Creates EL Civics Census Materials for California

LA Unified's Division of Adult and Career Education (DACE) embarked on a journey to develop lessons for English language learners designed to address the four most common barriers to participation outlined by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The result is a comprehensive series of instructional materials that adhere to the language and literacy objectives outlined by Objective 54.1 of the EL Civics Civic Objective and Additional Assessment Plan (COAAP).  

The curriculum is the cornerstone of DACE’s Census 2020 awareness campaign. Please go to to download the ESL classroom materials.

The assessments measure students’ knowledge of the importance of participating in the 2020 Decennial Census while testing students’ understanding of the questions appearing on the census. 

Some of the highlights of the materials include:

  • Lessons are aligned to the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS).
  • Teacher’s manuals, student workbooks and assessments are divided by skill level (i.e., BL, BH, etc.).
  • The teacher’s manual contains detailed lesson plans, including the lesson objective, structure, vocabulary, materials and references to U.S. Census educational videos.
  • The student workbook is consumable.
  • Worksheets are scaffolded to ensure students’ understanding of the materials and filled with evidence-based activities that will also address different students' learning modalities.

The LAUSD Census Curriculum Team, which took on this endeavor with a full understanding of how high-stakes the project was, surely delivered! A big thanks to Vanessa Little, Ed McBride and Jose Luis Montalvo. 

“'Let’s make all of our students count!' This phrase drove our curriculum team, which created and developed the rich and practical collection of instructional resources that will surely motivate and empower teachers and students who use them,” said Karla Galleguillos, the EL Civics Census project lead.

Galleguillos would also like to thank CASAS EL Civics Program Specialist Lori Howard for her guidance and feedback over the past six months.

Judy Mortrude, Senior Policy Analyst with CLASP's Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success, was effusive in her response to the recently shared census curriculum for low literacy adults:

“Wow – So amazing! Thanks so much for sharing this with the field. We are sure this will get linked around the country. LA rocks!"

A link to the materials will also be posted on the National Coalition for Literacy website and on the CAEP census page.
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