English as a Second Language

Looking for ESL classes? Visit http://pathways.opendoorssouthbay.org/objective/learn-english/ or access the ESL class database at https://www.immigrantinfo.org/esl-class-search/

In a County where 38.6 % of the population is foreign born, and 42,000 residents over the age of 18 speak English less than very well; it should be no surprise that English as a Second Language classes are the largest program area in our Consortium.

Adults Schools and Community College offer a wide variety of ESL classes, addressing the various goals of our ESL students. Our ESL pathways include:

  • ESL for Community Engagement, Citizenship and Parents
    Adult School and Community College (Non Credit) ESL programs that provide language skills taught in the context of American culture to support Immigrant Integration, prepare for the USCIS citizenship test or support parents who are supporting their children’s education.
  • ESL for the Workforce
    Our bridge programs and contextualized ESL create seamless transitions for ESL students to enter Career Technical Education (CTE), Apprenticeship or Workforce Preparation programs.
  • ESL for Academic Advancement
    Advanced ESL pathways and Memoranda of Understanding help ESL students make the transition to transfer-level English classes at Community Colleges.


One of four SBCAE Faculty Work Groups, the ESL Faculty Work Group advances the implementation of the Three Year and Annual Plan, as it relates to ESL students.

Current Year Activities, aligned with project 3 in the 2020-2021 work plan include:

  • Updating and Maintaining the Consortium wide ESL level alignment chart
  • Creating Student Journey Maps for ESL students transitioning to CTE programs
  • Immigrant Integration

2020-2021 ESL Faculty Work Group members

Sylvia Ortega West Valley College vacant vacant
Amelia Akers-Martin Mission College Bijal Varia Santa Clara Adult Education
Elizabeth Eastman West Valley College Ellen Goldman West Valley College
Heather Jellison San Jose City College Julaine Rosner Mission College
Jennifer Parker-Adib Campbell Adult & Community Education Karen Lepe Silicon Valley Adult Education
Karen Weldon Campbell Adult & Community Education Kathy Jasper Evergreen Valley College
Kim Nguyen Evergreen Valley College Khulan Zagd Silicon Valley Adult Education
Leslie Takei
San Jose City College Lisa Lau Milpitas Adult Education
Lora Glaser Mission College Mali Vafai
East Side Adult Education
Marina Broeder Mission College Patricia Pottorff-Croghan
Santa Clara Adult Education
Patti Gairaud Milpitas Adult Education Rachel Cohen Evergreen Valley College
Yevgeniya Sokolenko San Jose City College Aaron Tolbert
Steering Committee member
Mission College
Kathy Frye
Steering Committee member
East Side Adult Education vacant vacant

ESL Faculty Work Group Meeting Agendas and Minutes

May 7, 2021 Meeting Minutes (PDD)