Multilingual Learners (English as a Second Language (ESL) / English Language Learners (ELL))

  • Multilingual Learners LogoPhone: 405.533.5259

    314 S. Lewis St.
    Stillwater, OK 74074


      • Spring 2024

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 4/29/2024 3:00:00 PM

        Please Join Us for MC Night 2024!

        Comments (-1)
      • Winter 2023-2024

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 12/11/2023 10:00:00 AM

        Dear Families,

        I hope that this finds you happy and healthy. I know we are all ready for some rest and relaxation. With our winter break upon us, I wanted to call your attention to some upcoming events.

        In January, we will begin our annual WIDA Access testing. This is not a test our students must study for. It is an assessment to see how their proficiency in English has grown over the last year. This assessment includes four parts: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. The testing window runs from January to March. Please look for a note from your ELL teacher as to when your child will take the assessments. 

        In March, SPS will hold parent conferences. However, I would like for you to know that you can request a parent conference whenever you feel it is necessary. If you need an interpreter, please let the school know. We have interpreters available in all languages. SPS is required to offer you an interpreter. If you are not offered an interpreter, please call or email Stephanie Coca (405) 762-2830/ [email protected] . It is the highest priority of the district to ensure that parents and teachers can communicate without the limitation of a language barrier. Your concerns are important to us. 

        Finally, I thought I would leave you with information about holidays around the world that take place in November and December. It is always fun to see the cultural events and celebrations that make up our world. It reminds us how similar we are.  

        Diwali is India’s biggest holiday, celebrated on November 12. It is the festival of lights. Clay lights are lit outside the home to protect them from spiritual darkness. Diwali is a Hindu celebration that is also celebrated by non-Hindus as well. This celebration lasts for 5 days.

        Krampusnacht is held on December 5th. It is a legend that mixes pagan rituals with Christianity originating in Germany. Krampus is a half-goat, half-demon monster who punishes children who misbehave during Christmastime. While St. Nicholas rewards children with gifts, Krampus punishes the naughty children. 

        St. Nicholas Day St. Nicholas is the patron saint of Greece and Russia and of sailors and children. In Holland he is known as Sinterklaas. He would arrive on horseback in a red Bishop’s robe to deliver gifts and sweets to children. This day is celebrated on December 5th, or 6th or 19th (Eastern Europe).

        Bodhi Day: This day celebrates the Buddhist holiday in which Guatama Buddha is said to have attained Enlightenment or Nirvana. It is celebrated on December 8th in China, Korea, Japan, Vietnam and the Philippines. Buddhists may choose to meditate longer, chant Buddhist texts, perform kind acts or enjoy a traditional meal of tea and cake. 


        Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe This is a national holiday in Mexico that is celebrated in Catholic churches all of Mexico. You can also see the celebration here in Stillwater at the Catholic Church. The celebration occurs on December 12 because this was the day in 1531 that a young indigenous man named Juan Diego received a miraculous visit from the Virgin Mary. The rest of the story is full of miracles that led to shift in the beliefs of the indigenous people of Mexico. 

        Santa Lucia Day is celebrated in Scandinavian countries as the beginning of the Christmas season. On December 14 there is a festival celebrating the Christian martyr Saint Lucy. Young girls wear white dresses with lighted wreaths on their heads and young boys wear white pajamas. The lights come from the pagan tradition of using bonfires to scare off evil spirits. During the festival, children sing traditional songs, eat saffron bread and ginger biscuits, and drink coffee with their families. 


        Las Posadas is celebrated from December 16-24th in cities and towns across Mexico. Each evening during the festival, a small child dressed as an angel leads a procession through the streets of the town. The procession is primarily made up of children dressed in silver and gold robes carrying lit candles and images of Mary and Joseph riding a donkey. Adults, including musicians, follow the procession, which visits selected homes and asks for lodging for Joseph and Mary. Traditionally, the procession is always refused lodging, though the hosts often provide refreshments. At each stop, passages of scripture are read, and Christmas carols are sung.

        Hanukkah will occur this year  from December 7 through December 15th. This is a Jewish festival that occurs according to the Gregorian calendar. It is celebrated for 8 days and reaffirms the ideas of Judaism. Each of the 8 evenings, a candle is lit on an elaborate candelabra called a menorah and a blessing is given. There are daily prayers at home and in the synagogue. Special foods are made from this time of year and children receive presents and gifts of money. 


        Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year and occurs on December 21.

        Christmas In the U.S., church services celebrating the birth of Jesus begin in many places on the evening of December 24th, while others occur on the 25th. Religious services and cultural traditions of the home include readings in the bible and Christmas carols. Families will decorate large fir trees with ornaments, lights, and candy canes. Children learn of St. Nicholas (aka. Santa Claus) and hope that they will receive presents under the tree on Christmas day. Christmas is a time for family and friends to spend time together. Many countries around the world have different ways of celebrating Christmas. In India, a mango tree is decorated instead of a fir tree. In Mexico, children break a piñata filled with toys and candy. In Brazil, families participate in summer festivals with fireworks and picnics. Other countries celebrate the secular aspects of the holiday instead of the religious aspects.


        Kawanzaa is celebrated from December 26-December 31st with activities that honor African American culture and heritage. Family and friends gather and celebrate with gift exchanges and food. The celebration is inspired by African cultural practices. Families decorate a table with a traditional woven mat called a Mkeka. They add a basket filled with fruits and vegetables and one ear of corn for each child to represent the harvest. A unity cup called a kikombe cha umoja is also represented. Families light a Kinara (candelabra) each night that represent the 7 principles of Kwanzaa (unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith).

        Boxing Day is observed on December 26th in the United Kingdom, Canada, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. This custom started during the Victorian era. The rich would give box gifts to the poor. Masters would give their servants the day off and send them home with a special Christmas box. Now, the tradition is to watch football (soccer) matches and eat turkey sandwiches on this day!

        Just like New Year’s Eve, Omisoka is celebrated as the beginning of a new year with new possibilities, but their celebrations are a little different. Japanese New Year takes place on the last day of the year (December 31st). In preparation for a new year and a clean slate, people purify their homes and remove last year’s clutter by cleaning from top to bottom. This is called “osoji”. They have a giant feast with friends and family with some traditional Japanese foods. Often, people go out to celebrate or stay home and watch a nation-wide New Year’s talent competition until it’s time to count down to midnight. Omisoka isn’t just about having a party, it is also considered a spiritual event for many Japanese people, and at midnight they visit Shinto shrines. Temples ring a large cast iron bell at midnight to signify the 108 earthly wants that created human suffering.

        Comments (-1)
      • Fall 2023 Newsletter

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 10/31/2023

        Happy Fall!

        I hope you are enjoying the cooler weather! Thank you to all of the families who attended parent conferences with their English language teachers on Saturday, September 30th. It is our pleasure to have the opportunity to make a connection with our students' families. 

        November 20-24 will be a school holiday for students, teachers, and staff. Before the break, we are hosting a Friendship Dinner. We would like all of you to attend this dinner. It is a chance for families to meet each other, their child's teachers and administrators. This dinner is a potluck. A potluck is an American custom that asks guests to bring a food dish to the party to share with others. Stillwater Public Schools will bring turkey, mashed potatoes, and gravy. We need you to bring a food dish that is a favorite in your family. We will all eat together the different food items that people bring. This event is from 5:30-7:30 on Thursday, November 16th at Stillwater High School. I hope to see you there!

        This month is National Native American Heritage Month. National Native American Heritage Month is celebrated each year in November. It is a time to celebrate the traditions, languages and stories of Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and affiliated Island communities. They all have rich histories that deeply enrich the quality and character of our Nation. Oklahoma has many places to visit to learn more about Native American History. If you have time off during the break, I highly recommend you visit one.

        Here is a list:  

        Native American Sites to Visit 

        Comments (-1)
      • September 2023

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 8/31/2023 11:30:00 AM

        Welcome Back!

        The ELL teachers are excited to see the students back in the classroom! This year we have a few new teachers to introduce to you. 

        Amy Campbell - Will Rogers Elementary

        Patricia Fox - Stillwater High School

        Maya Moukaddem- Stillwater Junior High School

        We need your help! We are still in search of a bilingual interpreter that speaks Spanish and English. If you know of someone, please encourage them to apply for the position! It is a full-time position based at Stillwater High School. 


        Free Food!

        Please make sure you have filled out the forms on “School Cafe”. Go to the “Nutrition” page of the SPS Website. You must create a login and password before you apply. 


        Happening Now


        • Curriculum Night (Elementary Schools)

          • Your child’s teacher will invite you to school to talk about what they will be teaching your child this year. Don’t miss it! If you need interpretation, please call Mrs. Coca 405-762-2830 or email her at [email protected] 

        Coming Soon!

        • Hispanic Heritage Month Big Event! Friday, September 22 at Stillwater Middle School from 5:30-9:00pm
        • ELL Teacher-Parent Conferences

          • Look for an invitation from your ELL teacher. We will have one-on-one meetings with each family to talk about your child’s language and academic progress. Make sure to schedule a time. 

        • ACCESS Language Proficiency Scores 

          • Your ELL teacher will send you language proficiency scores from your child’s language test last spring. If you have questions about them, please set up a time during our parent conference day. 

        Comments (-1)
      • May Newsletter

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 5/9/2023 2:00:00 AM

        Hello Families,

        I cannot believe it is the end of the school year! What a great school year we had this year with our Friendship Dinner and our Global Community Event. Please make sure to look for summer activities on the SPS website. You will click on Academics and then click on Summer Activities to see all there is to do this summer in Stillwater. Below I have attached the summer meals information. Summer meals are free for ALL children up to age 18. Please take advantage of a sack lunch or hot meal this summer! Please feel free to email me this summer with any questions you have concerning the new year or the language program at Stillwater Public Schools. Have a wonderful summer!

        Respectfully, Summer Meals in Stillwater

        Stephanie Coca

        Comments (-1)
      • March Newsletter

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 3/23/2023 1:00:00 PM

        Happy Spring!

        Hello families! I apologize for not posting a newsletter until now! We were busy with our language testing in January and February, but we have finally finished! The children did a wonderful job! We will send scores out at the end of June or beginning of July. 

        Parent conferences are this week and next week. Please email your teacher or call the school to set up a time to meet your child's teacher. We have interpreters available.

        Fundraiser! Please support our students at school with the purchase of a cookbook that includes recipes from our students' families and our staff. You can purchase one here: Buy a Cookbook!

        We have an exciting event coming up! It is our annual multicultural night on April 29th from 5:30pm-7:30pm. It is our first event since COVID and we are so excited to bring it back. We invite you to participate in these ways:

        1. You can bring a food to share for our potluck.

        2. Have a cultural booth with an activity for guests.

        3. Participate in a stage presentation (sing, dance, play music)

        4. Wear traditional clothing to share your culture with others.

        If you are interested in participating in one of these four ways, please email me at [email protected]

        Stillwater’s Global Community Welcomes You!

        Share your piece of Stillwater with New Friends to Our Community.


        When:  Saturday, April 29th from 5:30 PM-7:30 PM

        Where: Stillwater Junior High School Cafeteria (1900 N. Skyline Street)

        Who: Stillwater Public Schools, OSU, Community Organizations, and Businesses

        What Can I Share?

        *Information for new families (banks, cars, restaurants, utilities, library, etc.)*

        *** food (dish) to share with others *** dance *** music *** art presentations ***

        Comments (-1)
      • November Newsletter

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 11/16/2022 11:00:00 AM

        Happy Thanksgiving!

        Hello Families! We are so thankful that you have chosen to live in Stillwater and attend Stillwater Public Schools! Tomorrow night is our annual Friendship Dinner. We hope to see you there!

        Stillwater ELL Families and Teachers You are Invited!

        November 17, 2022

        6:00-8:00 PM

        Stillwater High School Student Center

        1224 N. Husband Street

        Bring your family and a cultural dish to share with others.


        REMINDER: There will be no school from November 21- November 25. 

        Comments (-1)
      • Fall Newsletter

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 10/10/2022

        Happy Fall and Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!

        We are so happy to see all of your children's faces at school every day!

        Parents, please welcome the following new teachers to our program.

        • Sara Ahmed- SJHS and SHS
        • Lashta Attaie- SJHS and Parent Outreach
        • Farangis Pardes- SMS, Will Rogers, and Parent Outreach

        These new teachers will support many of our wonderful multilingual learners, parents, and teachers in the English as a Second Language (ESL) Department. 

        Thank you to all who attended our Saturday Parent Conference Day on October 8th. If you missed it, please feel free to call your child's language teacher to schedule a time to meet. Don't forget to schedule conferences with your child's other teachers as well. The district Parent-Teacher Conference dates are Thursday, October 20th and Tuesday, October 25th. 

        At your parent conference, you will learn about the ways that teachers go above and beyond to support your child's English language proficiency. The ESL teachers at Stillwater Public Schools (SPS) advocate for your child's learning every day. If you feel that there is something that SPS can do to support your child more, please contact me or your child's ESL teacher. 

        Finally, we are so proud of Iqbal Attaie for demonstrating leadership qualities. Thank you Iqbal for being a such a great role model at the junior high!

        Pioneer of the MonthIqbal Attaie

        Have a wonderful October!


        Stephanie Coca


        Comments (-1)
      • August Newsletter

        Posted by Stephanie Coca on 8/15/2022 9:00:00 AM

        Important District News:


        Welcome Back!


        We really missed all of our students and we are so happy to have them all back at school! 


        This year breakfast is free for all students. To qualify for free or reduced lunch, please make sure you have filled out the forms on “School Cafe”. Go to the “Nutrition” page of the SPS Website. You must create a login and password before you apply. 


        Coming Soon!


        • Curriculum Night (Elementary Schools)

          • Your child’s teacher will invite you to school to talk about what they will be teaching your child this year. Don’t miss it! If you need interpretation, please call Mrs. Coca 405-762-2830 or email her at [email protected] 

        • ELL Teacher-Parent Conferences

          • Look for an invitation from your ELL teacher. We will have one-on-one meetings with each family to talk about your child’s language and academic progress. Make sure to schedule a time. 

        • ACCESS Language Proficiency Scores 

          • Your ELL teacher will send you language proficiency scores from your child’s language test last spring. If you have questions about them, please set up a time during our parent conference day. 


        Summer School 2022


        • Thank you to all of the students who attended summer school! We had so much fun! Children learned about habitats, the environment, and how to keep our world clean. On the last day, secondary students prepared a habitat carnival for the elementary students to practice all we learned during the three weeks. 

        Habitat QuizYummy Breakfasts!Habitat Boardgames!Kindergarten Fun!Oragami!Prizes

        Preschool Fun!Fun Teachers!MentorsRecess

        Comments (-1)

      ELL Staff

      • 2023-2024 ELL STAFF

        Stephanie Coca, District-wide ELL Coordinator
        Will Rogers Elementary, Stillwater High School
        405-707-5259, [email protected] 

        Amy Campbell, Newcomer ELL Teacher
        Will Rogers Elementary
        405-533-6380, [email protected] 

        Soha Elfeel, Newcomer ELL Teacher
        Will Rogers Elementary
        [email protected]

        Giovannina Blandón, Bilingual ELL Teacher Assistant (Spanish)
        Will Rogers Elementary & Highland Park Elementary
        405-533-6380, [email protected] 

        Anne Kuhbander, ELL Teacher
        Westwood Elementary
        405-533-6370, [email protected] 

        Myra Noden, ELL Teacher
        Highland Park Elementary
        405-533-6350, [email protected]

        Shahrzad Mehrzad, ELL Teacher
        Sangre Elementary School 
        [email protected]

        Abenna Annan, ELL Teacher 
        Skyline Elementary & Richmond Elementary
        405-533-6390, [email protected] 

        Rebekah Jimenez, ELL Teacher
        Stillwater Middle School
        405-533-6430, [email protected] 

        Tayyab Ghazniwal, Multilingual Language Interpreter Teacher Assistant (Pashto/Dari)
        Stillwater High School & Stillwater Junior High School
        405-533-6430, [email protected]   

        Aziza Kermani, Multilingual Language Interpreter Teacher Assistant (Pashto/Dari)
        Stillwater Middle School
        405-533-6380, [email protected]     

        Lashta Attaie, Multilingual Language Interpreter Teacher Assistant  (Pashto/Dari)
        Will Rogers Elementary
        405-533-6420, [email protected]    

        Maya Moukaddem, ELL Teacher
        Stillwater Junior High
        405-533-6420, [email protected]  

        Debbie Shores, ELL Teacher
        Stillwater Middle School 
        405-533-6430, [email protected] 

        Patricia Fox, ELL Teacher
        Stillwater High School

        Lorena Castro, Bilingual ELL Teacher Assistant (Spanish)  
        Stillwater High School
        405-533-6450, [email protected] 

      Programs and Services

      • SPS has a continuum of interventions that have been developed for English Learners based on their understanding of the English language in four domains:speaking, listening, reading, and writing. The levels of programming available for students include the following:


        Newcomer Programming

          • Programming that provides specific support to students who perform at a lower level in the four domains will be available at:

                                    Will Rogers Elementary          Stillwater Middle School

                                  Stillwater Junior High School    Stillwater High School

          • Students who participate in newcomer programming will spend part of their day in an EL classroom with intensive language support provided by one of the newcomer EL teachers.


        EL Intervention Programming

          • Programming that provides specific support to students who perform at a level which indicates additional support is needed is available at all district schools.


        EL Consultation Support

        • For students who do not require direct EL services, consultation support with classroom/content teachers will be available from school site EL Specialists at all district schools.  

        Current federal guidelines require that ELs receive academic support and intervention if their English Language development skills inhibit them from accessing the curriculum at grade level.


        Reminder of Your Rights:

        You have been informed of the recommended level of ELD supports for your child; however, you have the right to decline any or part of these EL services.If you are considering declining services for your child, please complete the online form available at 


      • 1312 South Sangre Road | Stillwater, OK 74074 | 405.377.3333 | 

        Classes are held in Stillwater and focus on strengthening the student’s listening, speaking, reading and writing skills and are offered at no cost. ESL classes are funded by state and federal funds through the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education.

        Tuesdays (Beginner) | 5:30 – 8:30 pm
        Fridays (Intermediate) | 8:30 – 10:30 am
        Fridays (Advanced) | 10:30 am – 12:30 pm

        For more information, call 405.377.3333. Use entrance 2 and park in parking lot B. Enter through door B3.

      District Coordinator

      Phone: 405-533-5259 (office) 405-762-2830 (cell)


      Degrees and Certifications:

      Stephanie Coca

      My international exposure began as a child living in California. I was lucky enough to be a part of a school that taught Spanish in the elementary schools. When I became a young adult, my parents moved our family to London, England where I went to an international college preparatory school. I absolutely loved having friends from all over the world! Our school allowed us to travel all over Europe and be exposed to many different cultures. Learning about other cultures became one of my passions!