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Understanding Checkpoint Proficiency Targets

The Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages of the New York State Education Department presents "Understanding Checkpoint Proficiency Targets".

Original webinar date:  Wednesday, July 21, 2021, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m.

Webinar description:  This presentation describes the concept of proficiency and explores the specific characteristics of Novice, Intermediate and Advanced proficiency levels and sublevels. In addition, participants will discover how to set course proficiency targets within each Checkpoint in the NYS Learning Standards for World Languages (adopted March 2021) and the implications for instructional decisions for each level.

Webinar Facilitation Guide (WordPDF):  This facilitation guide is designed for use by a facilitator and/or participants engaged in professional learning designed around this webinar and its focus topic(s). Facilitators and/or participants may use the facilitation guide in whole or in part, all at once or spaced out over time. They may additionally customize the facilitation guide to best suit their needs by modifying, adding to, or eliminating suggested discussion questions and/or tasks.  The facilitation guide begins with an overview of the webinar goals and its organization. It follows with suggestions of structured discussion questions and tasks that are organized for use before, during, and after webinar viewing and aligned to the stated webinar goals.

Link to webinar flyer

Webinar Presenters:  Bill Heller & Dr. Joanne O'Toole

Bill Heller has taught in public elementary, secondary, community college and undergraduate classrooms for 40 years, including 24 years teaching Spanish at Perry High School. He has been a methods and Spanish instructor at SUNY Geneseo since 2001.  He is a frequent presenter of workshops, webinars and keynotes. Bill served as Conference Chair for the 2018 Northeast Conference (NECTFL) and is currently a member of the Executive Board and Content Advisory Panel for World Languages at the New York State Education Department (NYSED).

Dr. Joanne O'Toole is a Professor of Modern Language Education in the Curriculum and Instruction Department at SUNY Oswego. She is a member of the Executive Committee of the NYSED World Languages Content Advisory Panel and the Principal Investigator of the NYS World Language Standards Initiative. Joanne has served in several world language leadership positions including NYSAFLT President and NECTFL Director, and is a regular presenter at national, regional, state, and local conferences. Joanne is a certified teacher of Spanish and taught Spanish for 16 years prior to entering post-secondary education.

Link to Handouts folder from webinar

Link to recording of webinar

Links to post-assessments

To receive a certificate of completion (including a CTLE certificate), NYS educators must view the recording of the webinar (see link above) in its entirety and then answer at least seven out of ten questions correctly on the post assessment.  If the minimum required score (7 out of 10) is achieved, the educator will receive a certificate via email within an hour.  For the convenience of our World Language educators, there are multiple versions of the post assessment available, should the required score not be achieved on the first attempt.  Educators may take each version of the post assessment once.

Important notes:

  1. Educators may take each version of the post assessment once.  Credit will not be given for taking a single version of the post assessment more than once. 
  2. Credit will not be given for more than one passing score on any of the post assessments for a webinar (listed below) in a single academic year.  
  3. Educators may receive credit for viewing the webinar recording and passing a post assessment once in each academic year and are encouraged to take a different version of the post assessment on a yearly basis to review and test their knowledge of the webinar's content. 
  4. It is the responsibility of the individual educator to keep track of the information on the professional learning they complete each year, including the number of CTLE hours.
  5. Questions about this webinar or the post assessments, should be directed to Candace Black at (585) 356-0951 or at

Webinar Summary

# of attendees: 266

# of CTLE certificates issued: 205

# of certificates of attendance issued: 61

# of organizations represented by attendees:

  • 240 districts
  • 4 non-public schools
  • 6 charter schools
  • 7 BOCES and/or RBERNs
  • 7 colleges & universities
  • 2 government agencies

Quotes from Participants of this Workshop

  • “I love the idea of spiraling and eliciting sentences. I feel like my students often say ‘but in English we don't always use complete sentences’. I love the examples you shared to elicit sentence responses!” ~ JoAnn
  • “Thank you so much.  This was awesome, very comprehensible and gave me many ideas to use with my student to stretch their proficiency to the next level.” ~ Eleanor
  • “This is a big shift in how we present and reinforce grammar in our language classes. I am excited for the new paradigm of accuracy is not the most crucial component.” ~ Leah
  • “I have always felt that we needed to change our standards.  In my school I have been using from novice low-high to advance.  But love how you taught us to go from comfort level to stretch which is what I do.  You just explained awesome.” ~ Zoraida
  • “I really like the examples of how to stretch to the next level. I can grasp the ideas of what to do. Thanks a lot. (Gam-sa-hap-ni-da)” ~ Jounghye
  • “Thank you very much for your effort and work on this presentation. It is truly appreciated. Your analogies were excellent, clear and very helpful for teachers.”  ~ Lucille
  • “the workshop has made it easy for me the grasp the current shift.” ~ Amadou
  • “I loved the illustrations and examples used to help visualize and support the concepts taught.” ~ Dilcia
  • “Very informative! I loved the analogies to real world skills.”  ~ Lauren
  • “Ευχαριστώ! Thank you so much for such an amazing workshop!” ~ Dionysia

(last updated 9/5/2022)