Purpose:

  • Learn about and review Dual Language Program components and the issues affecting the development of PK-12 dual language programs.
  • Recommend a model for possible implementation of Dual Language Program(s) in Bellingham Public Schools no sooner than 2024-25.
  • Identify projected program design at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.
  • Develop a timeline that includes initial plans for dual language program professional development, curriculum and materials, and program evaluation plan.
  • Present a draft of Bellingham Public Schools Dual Language Framework (formerly known as the dual language “master plan”) to the superintendent and school board for review and consideration of next steps.

Basis for Establishment:

  • Dual language programs offer asset-based education that builds strong home-school connections, and they advance identity development by honoring the language of multilingual students’ family/community.
  • Research indicates that dual language programs serve to close achievement gaps for English Learners more effectively than other program models.
  • The Washington State Superintendent has established a vision for serving multilingual learners through two-way dual language programs, beginning in kindergarten and extending through 12th grade available to all Washington State multilingual learners by 2030.
  • As a result of the Early Learning and K-12 Dual Language Law (1445 S.SL. c 236), Washington State offers competitive grants to school districts who are developing dual language programs.  Bellingham Public Schools received one of these two-year grants for $200,000 to support this work.

Decision-Making Process:

  • Recommendations will be made based on research, discussion and input gathered during the process.
  • Task Force will utilize processes of consensus and input/feedback. We will engage in clear communication among team members and with stake holders regarding the work.
  • The work will be consultative with the Department of Teaching and Learning.
  • The group will be a recommending body to the superintendent.

Plan of Work:

  • 2021: Issue call for applications
  • November 2021: Form the Dual Language Task Force
  • December 2021-March 2022: Task Force meets to build background knowledge regarding Dual Language Program components through reading, research, and site visits to dual language programs in other districts.
  • April-May 2022: The Task Force will propose a recommended dual language program model and complete a draft of the “dual language master plan” document.
  • June 2022: The Task Force will review and submit the master plan draft to the superintendent and will work on details of the year-two Dual Language Task Force timeline for 2022-23.
  • November 2022: Dual Language Task Force members attend National “La Cosecha” Dual Language Conference
  • November 2022-May 2022:  Dual Language Task Force and smaller work teams complete each component of the “Dual Language Framework” plan and submit the plan to the superintendent for review and approval.

Members:

  • Isabel Meaker, Executive Director of Family Engagement, co-chair
  • Amy Carder, Director of Teaching and Learning (Multilingual Learners), co-chair
  • Dual Language Program Consultants from Education Impact Exchange
  • Mike Copland, Deputy Superintendent
  • Tom Gresham, Director of Teaching and Learning (Title I, Early Childhood, Student Services)
  • Analisa Ficklin, Assistant Director of Special Education
  • Dana Smith, Communications Manager
  • Nick Hayes, Principal, Happy Valley Elementary School
  • Allison Chryst, Vice Principal, Shuksan Middle School
  • Nicole Talley, Principal, Birchwood Elementary School
  • Nelly Schonborn, Multilingual Learner Specialist
  • Angelica Garcia, Multilingual Learner Specialist
  • Rachel Grogan, Multilingual Learner Specialist
  • Rey Ramos, K-12 Math TOSA
  • Meira Lifson, Teacher, Cordata Elementary School
  • Luz Lopez, Teacher, Alderwood Elementary School
  • Mandeep Kaur, ML Paraeducator
  • Esmeralda Ortiz, ML Paraeducator, Shuksan Middle School
  • Laura Nunez, Paraeducator, Squalicum High School
  • Mariangely Gonzalez, Administrative Assistant, Birchwood Elementary School
  • 6-7 Parents/guardians of multilingual learners
  • Students (Preferable High School Teacher Academy Participants)
  • Lisa Peterson, BEA President
  • Community Partners
    • Director Bilingual Teacher Community Routes, Western Washington University
    • Opportunity Council Early Childhood Representative

(School Board Member, ex officio)

Responsibilities:

  • Attend all Task Force meetings and engage in reflective conversations
  • Participate in educational activities and readings
  • Gather and share feedback from stakeholder groups
  • Interact collaboratively and respectfully with all task force members.
  • Opportunity to participate in dual language school site visit day trips to Skagit Valley, Bellevue, Highline, Kent or Evergreen School District.

Timeline:

Meetings will be held every other month on Thursday afternoons from 4 to 5:30 p.m., November 2022 through May 2023.

  • Wednesday Nov. 16, 2022 4:00-5:30
  • Wednesday Jan. 11, 2023 4:00-5:30
  • Wednesday March 8, 2023 4:00-5:30
  • Wednesday May 10, 2023 4:00-5:30
  • Thursday Dec. 9, 2021 4:00-5:30 Minutes
  • Thursday Feb. 10, 2022 4:00-5:30 Minutes
  • Thursday April 21, 2022 4:00-5:30 Minutes
  • Thursday June 9, 2022 4:00-5:30 Minutes

Budget Implications:

All anticipated budget expenses for professional learning, travel, materials, substitutes, etc. will be covered through the state dual language grant.

Other: 

In addition to representation on the task force, relevant groups will be targeted to solicit input and provide feedback.