Highline offers elementary dual language programs at Hazel Valley, Hilltop, Madrona, Midway, Mount View and White Center Heights elementary schools. Secondary middle school programs are available at Cascade, Chinook and Glacier middle schools. Secondary high school programs are available at Evergreen, Highline and Tyee high schools.
Students in Highline’s dual language programs receive 50% of their instruction in English and 50% in Spanish or Vietnamese and are taught by qualified bilingual teachers. The program includes students who are native speakers of English, Spanish, Vietnamese and many other languages.
- Elementary students learn reading and writing in both languages, math in English, science and health in Spanish or Vietnamese, and social studies in English, Spanish or Vietnamese.
- Middle and high school students have at least one language arts course and one content course taught in Spanish or Vietnamese.
The goals of the dual language program are to help students:
- Become bilingual and biliterate, developing high levels of proficiency in two languages.
- Perform at or above grade level in academic areas in both languages.
- Demonstrate positive cross-cultural attitudes and behaviors.
- Being bilingual is good for the brain.
- Students in a dual language program have higher academic achievement.
- Bilingual people have greater economic opportunities than people who don’t speak two languages.
- Students in a dual language program learn about and respect other cultures and languages.
- Students benefit from a dual language program most when enrolled for 6 years or more.
- After English, Spanish and Vietnamese are the most frequently spoken languages by students and families in our district.
- There are more resources and teachers available for these languages.
- There are many future job opportunities for Spanish and Vietnamese speakers in our community.
White Center Heights Elementary School will launch a Somali Language Enrichment Program in kindergarten starting in the 2023-24 school year.
Starting in September 2023, kindergarten students not enrolled in the Spanish or Vietnamese dual language program will receive 30 minutes of Somali language learning during the school day. For the remainder of the school day, students will have English instruction.
The Somali language enrichment program is the next step in considering the development of a full Somali-English Dual Language program at a later date.
For more information about our dual language programs, please contact Language Learning at 206-631-3035.