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Bilingual Education and Dual Language Programs

Brazposport ISD bilingual, dual language students

ESL Family Parent Liaison, Mrs. Montiel from Brazosport ISD, spoke to bilingual students.

What is a dual language program?

In dual language schools and programs, half of the students speak in their native language and the other half are English language speakers.

This benefits both groups.  For example, one group can learn from the other in a setting guided by an accredited dual language teacher.

Dual language program benefits for students:

What is bilingual education?

In bilingual education classrooms, students speak only in their native language.  In addition, all instruction and interactions are conducted in the student’s primary language.

What is a dual language immersion program?

Programs like Spanish immersion are designed so that English speaking students can become fluent in Spanish. Students might enter in first grade where 90% of the instruction and interactions are conducted in English.

As students progress through school, the percentage taught in Spanish increases. By the time the student moves on to middle school, they are fluent in Spanish. Some public schools also offer French immersion programs.

Alief ISD's Lunar New Year Celebration
Alief ISD Petrosky Elementary School's Lunar New Year Celebration, Mandarin students.
UTSA invited South San Antonio ISD teachers and staff to its Bi-annual Bilingual Awards Ceremony and Reception for children and youth literature.

UTSA hosted and invited South San Antonio ISD teachers and staff to its Bi-annual Bilingual Awards.

Expanding dual language skills

Other programs that provide students an opportunity to expand their dual language skills include study abroad. Study abroad scholarships help offset the cost of travel to another country such as Spain, France, or Italy.

Program Spotlight: Dual Language

Bilingual education, dual language, and Spanish immersion programs are sought after by many parents, families, and students. Students reap valuable rewards from these programs.

Dual Language News

Bilingual Education and Title V11

In 1968, Congress mandated bilingual education with Title V11 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, also known as the Bilingual Education Act. The objective of bilingual education is to provide immigrants access to education in their primary or first language. The Bilingual Education Act has been amended to address issues like funding, training and academic support, and eligibility.

The U.S. Department of Education describes a bilingual education program as “an educational program for limited English proficient students.” The term, “limited English proficiency” describes an individual whose primary language is not English. Challenges in reading, writing, and conversation, and/or communication deny that person an opportunity to fully participate in society.

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