DUAL LANGUAGE BILINGUAL PROGRAM - PARENT CHOICE OPPORTUNITY
The Dual Language Bilingual Program is a form of education in which students are taught literacy and content in two languages.
The program aim:
- Bilingualism - the ability to speak fluently in two languages
- Biliteracy - the ability to read and write in two languages
- Academic achievement equal to that of students in non-dual language programs
- Diverse culture learning experiences
- Enrichment language program for all students
BES is a two-way (bilingual) partial immersion program. Our goal is to enroll a balance of native English speakers and native Spanish speakers in the homeroom class. We are a partial immersion, or 50/50, program teaching about 50% of the time in English and 50% of the time in Spanish. Research indicates that students who spend more time in the partner language do better in that language (Howard, Christian & Genesee, 2001; Lindholm-Leary, 2001) and that language minority students (in the U.S, those whose native language is not English) do better academically when their native language is supported and developed (Thomas & Collier, 1997; 2002).
Our school divides language through the daily schedule. Within the dual language program, students speak and study in one language at a time, and the times for each language are explicitly defined. At BES students rotate speaking one language one day and the other language on the next day during Science, Social Studies and Health in Kindergarten through 4th grades. Literacy is taught in a child's primary language first and in their new language second. Classrooms with dual language learners also benefit from each others language expertise and diverse cultural experiences throughout the school year.
The program has been at BES for 17 years in grades Kindergarten through 4th grade. Our results show that our students meet or exceed their peers in academic learning who are not a part of the bilingual program. If you have further questions about the program, please contact Suzanne Wheeler-Del Piccolo at 384-5801.
The program is a choice for parents and students at BES. If you would like your child to be a part of the Dual Language Bilingual Program, please contact the office.