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The idea for this special issue grew out of the editors' involvement in TESOL's ESL in Bilingual Education Interest Section (BEIS). As we respectively took leadership roles within BEIS. While Shelley co-conducted a survey of TESOL members regarding the need for a multilingual language policy within TESOL; Kristin spearheaded a resolution regarding Deaf learner's language rights that subsequently became a TESOL (2009) Position Statement. These activities were rooted in the belief that learners' linguistic repertoires have a crucial role to play in learning English. This special issue's focus on plurilingualism, or multilingualism at the level of the individual is intended to further illuminate the role and value of learners' and teachers' first languages (L1s) and additional languages, and policies that support their plurilingual repertoires in relation to TESOL's mission of advancing excellence in English language teaching in a highly diverse, multilingual world.