Santa Ana Unified School District Provides Dual Language Programs and Options
Santa Ana Unified School District provides dual language programs and options. Rocio Valdez is one of 890 students who graduated from the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD) in 2017 with the skill and ability to read and write one or more languages in addition to English fluently.
To recognize Valdez’s and her peers’ high level of proficiency in these languages, they received the California State Seal of Biliteracy and proudly wore a beautiful medallion that signified their accomplishments during their individual graduation ceremonies.
The Seal of Biliteracy is an award, a statement of accomplishment, given to students who have studied and attained proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation.
Seal of Biliteracy
Effective January 1, 2012, the State Seal of Biliteracy administered by the California Department of Education is a program that demonstrates the value and embraces the diversity of different cultures. California was the first in the United States to institute such a program and has become a model to such states as New York, Connecticut, and Arkansas, which have also instituted similar programs.
“Being biliterate gives our students a competitive edge in our global society by equipping them with a highly desirable skill in the job market,” said Dr. Stefanie Phillips, Superintendent of Santa Ana Unified School District. “We are extremely proud of their accomplishments, and commend them for their dedication and commitment to achieve a skill that will set them apart.”
For more on the Seal of Biliteracy, click on the topics on the left.
Dual Language Immersion
To support students in their pathway to become biliterate, the District also provides Dual Language Immersion programs beginning in kindergarten.
Offered currently at Jefferson, King, Lowell, Pio Pico, and beginning in fall 2017 at Romero Cruz elementary schools and continuing at Carr and McFadden intermediate schools, and Saddleback High School, students receive a robust and rigorous program aligned with California State Standards in both English and Spanish.
The philosophy of SAUSD is to value, promote, and develop biliteracy and biculturalism through its Dual Language Immersion and World Language Programs in Elementary, Intermediate, and High Schools.
As part of this process, during the next few years, the district will increase the number of schools that offer world languages in their curricula, knowing that learners with a rigorous language instruction in addition to English will be clearly prepared for our global economic growth and competitiveness.
The district will also strongly support the provision for parent choice to enroll their children in a school that offers these bilingual programs or world language classes.
To read more about SAUSD’s Dual Language Academy, click on the topics to the left.
With the student population in Santa Ana Unified being 40% English Learners primarily in Spanish, all of the SAUSD Dual Language programs focus on the Spanish language to cultivate and strengthen skills that may already exist with some students.
“This program really helped me gain a stronger connection with the Hispanic community and parents around me,” said Valdez. “Overall, it helped me gain a stronger foundation in Spanish and will allow me to transfer those skills in English to help me with critical thinking and context clues.”
Valdez benefited from the Dual Language Program at King Elementary School.
After King, she continued in the program at Carr, and for high school, enrolled at Godinez Fundamental High School, where she graduated with a grade point average of 4.64. Valdez credits the opportunities provided to her throughout the District and strong teachers for her success.