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California English Language Development Test (CELDT)

State law (EC sections 313 and 60810) and federal law (Titles I and III of the
Elementary and Secondary Education Act [ESEA]) require that LEAs administer a
state test of ELP and develop Annual Measurable Achievement Objectives (AMAOs)
for: (1) newly enrolled students whose primary language is not English as an Initial Assessment,
and (2) students who are English learners as an Annual Assessment. For California’s public school
students, this test is the CELDT.

The CELDT has three purposes:
 To identify students who are limited English proficient (LEP)
 To determine the level of ELP of LEP students
 To assess the progress of LEP students in acquiring the skills of listening,
speaking, reading, and writing in English

All students in kindergarten through grade twelve (K–12) whose primary language is
not English must take the CELDT as an IA to determine if they are English learners
within 30 calendar days after they are first enrolled in a California public school or 60
days prior to instruction, but not before July 1, per CELDT regulations. The CELDT
also must be given annually as an AA to students identified as English learners until
they are reclassified as RFEP.


For more information go to: California Deparment of Education (http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/el/index.asp)


English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC)

The English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC) will be the successor to the California English Language Development Test (CELDT). The CELDT is the current required state test for English language proficiency (ELP) that must be given to students whose primary language is a language other than English.

State and federal law require that local educational agencies administer a state test of ELP to eligible students in kindergarten (or year one of a two-year kindergarten program, sometimes referred to as "transitional kindergarten") through grade twelve. The California Department of Education (CDE) is transitioning from the CELDT to the ELPAC as the state ELP assessment by 2018. The ELPAC will be aligned with the 2012 California English Language Development Standards, and will be comprised of two separate ELP assessments:

  • an initial identification of students as English learners
  • an annual summative assessment to measure a student’s progress in learning English and to identify the student's ELP level

For more information, please visit the ELPAC website at: http://www.elpac.org/about/

or the California Department of Education website: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/ep/

Guide to Test Reports

The California English Language Development Test (CELDT) 2016–17 Edition Guide to Test Reports:






The purpose of the guide is to help parents and others understand the CELDT Student Performance Level Report. The guide provides the purposes of the CELDT, describes the test format, includes a sample of the 2016–17 Edition CELDT Student Performance Level Report, and indicates where more information can be obtained. The guide is applicable to all grades.


Additionally, a second document called the CELDT Test Performance Descriptors is also available on the same Web page provided above. This document, which has not been modified from the previous edition, includes the Overall Test Performance Descriptors–one set for students in kindergarten and grade one (K–1), and another for students in grades two through twelve; and domain-specific descriptors for each grade/grade span (K–1, 2, 3–5, 6–8, and 9–12).

CELDT Test Scores

For districts requesting CELDT scores, please fax your request to 510-794-2199 or email the request form to mdinsmore@newarkunified.org

For parents inquiring about CELDT scores, please contact your child's school.

California English Language Development Test (CELDT) Reference Material