Our ESL Program
There are many reasons for people in our community to need help, loss of employment, fixed incomes, recent immigration, and the list goes on. We want to satisfy the immediate needs of our neighbors so that they can address their long-term needs.
In the past 10 years, the foreign-born population in Nashville has seen tremendous growth, and it now represents about 12% of our city’s population. The city is home to large numbers of Kurds, Vietnamese, Cambodians, Laotians, Mexicans, Arabs. We are home to the largest community of Kurdish people in America, and there are also small communities of immigrants from Pakistan and Afghanistan, mostly centered in Antioch.
With such a diversity in the population, it is not surprising that there is a need for English Language Learning. Wendy Salyers directs our ELL, with 15 dedicated, part-time teachers helping with the various classes. Traditional English classes, providing four hours of instruction per week, are available Monday-Thursday, mornings and evenings. These classes include Reading, Basic, and Levels 1-4. Our Intensive English meets for 8-9 hours per week, Monday-Thursday. The cost for the classes varies, depending on the class which is taken.
Every class period has a break during which we serve light refreshments. This is a time when our students, staff and any volunteers present can practice speaking English together in a relaxed, informal way. We would always welcome anyone, or a group, who would like to support our ESL by providing a snack or light meal for our students. We also enjoy having Conversation Partners, especially in the Intensive class, so that our students can hear native English speakers, other than their teachers. If you are interested in working with our ESL students, volunteer by clicking the link below.