8th grade science teacher Meredith Vanden Berg works with student Jose Virgen at Meadow Park Middle School in Beaverton, Ore. FROM TEACHER: Jose is a beginner ELL – meaning he pretty much doesn’t speak English. He’s from Mexico and moved here at the beginning of the school year. He completed six years of school in Mexico. He’s 14 years old. We were talking about ionic bonding that day. On Friday, he took a quiz on this material. I read it to him and he was able to get a proficient grade on it!