The Refugee department serves students from diverse backgrounds that have come to live in the Houston area as a result of resettlement
The program is based on the initial MELT core curriculum performance outcomes and cross referenced to the 1990 updates and the current Texas Education Authority Adult Education standards and guidelines. ESL classes are a minimum of 80 hours and are generally offered two hours per day; five days a week.Â The Literacy Program consists of two 80-hour sessions for a total of 160 hours.Â General ESL classes are offered for levels 1 to 4 for 80-hour cycles.Â
Literacy, language skills, priority of service, and special needs (transportation, babysitting, variable work schedules, etc.) are recorded on the registration form at first contact.Â Based on this information, students are selected and placed into the appropriate classes.Â For the ESL/ESP program, the short form of the BEST Test (Form C) is used by a trained staff member to determine the language skill level for class placement.Â In addition to the best test, the Native Language Literacy Abilities Test is used to identify native literacy ability.Â Refugees are generally assigned to a class within ten days from our initial contact.
We offer classes in more than a dozen locations, both at our main office at 6060 Richmond Street, Houston, TX and at satellite locations. Classes are offered in areas that have been shown to promote attendance, as they are in close proximity to student residences, places of worship and community centers, thus minimizing the need for transportation and childcare.Â BEIâ€™s main campus is accessible via Houston Metro on bus routes 53, 82, and 25, which serve the southwest and central parts of the city and connect with other routes.
Bilingual Education Institute is able to offer our ESL and Civics classes at no cost to eligible students. While eligibility may vary from case to case, persons over the age of 16, who maintain the following immigration statuses typically qualify to participate in our programs at no cost:
Victim of Torture (with certified letter)
Victim of Trafficking (with certified letter)
Other immigrants who hold an I-94 or SI2 visa