SupportEd and MA DESE technical assistance work with english learners

SupportEd Chosen to Provide Technical Assistance to Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

FAIRFAX, VA, July 8, 2024 — The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) had noticed increasing numbers of multilingual learner (ML) newcomer students, and the state agency desired a targeted approach. DESE strategically selected SupportEd to partner with and provide technical assistance based on the expertise and solutions SupportEd provides.

The partnership began in December 2023, and SupportEd has provided ongoing technical assistance to ten districts in Massachusetts. The comprehensive initiative consists of on-site needs assessments, data analysis, findings reports, and several targeted virtual consultations with each district. This support is strengthening newcomer programming to improve intake and enrollment procedures, effective English language development and structured English immersion instruction, and professional learning for staff as well as administration.

Shannon Smith, MEd, SupportEd ML Coach and Technical Assistance Specialist, has been the project manager from SupportEd leading the collaborative efforts to create and implement this project. 

“Collaborating with the DESE team and the school districts has been so fulfilling for me and the rest of the SupportEd team,” said Smith, “Not only are they wonderful to collaborate with, but also because I know our work will have such a significant, positive impact on newcomer multilingual learners across the entire Commonwealth of Massachusetts,” explained Smith.

To learn more and partner with SupportEd on technical assistance consultations, visit

About SupportEd

SupportEd is a woman-owned business based in Fairfax, Virginia providing Multilingual Learner (ML) professional development, personalized coaching, technical assistance, and resources for educators across the United States and Canada. Founded in 2011 by Dr. Diane Staehr Fenner, four-time best-selling author and ML expert, SupportEd builds authentic partner relationships and meticulously crafts customized solutions to fit every partner’s strengths and goals. SupportEd equips teachers and administrators with the practical tools and strategies necessary to champion MLs’ success within and beyond the classroom. Visit or call (202) 660-1444 to learn more.

Michele Iris

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