2020-21 Dual Language Family Update
As part of LISD’s response to the challenges presented by COVID-19, the district has determined a virtual option for students in our Dual Language cannot be offered. We know this is disappointing, and we want to share with you the reasoning behind that decision, as well as offer answers to some questions we have received.
We want to provide you the following important clarifications:
- If your child will be participating in the Virtual Learning Pathway they will not lose their current spot in the Dual Language program at their designated campus, nor will a language proficiency exam be required for return to the program for the current year or the 21-22 school year if a student remains enrolled in the district.
- If you decide for your child to start the Virtual Learning Pathway, but at a later time this school year return to in-person learning at the campus, they will be able to return to the Dual Language program at their designated campus.
- Out-of-district students who are on an approved transfer will be able to continue in the program for the 2021-22 school year, as long as they stay enrolled in the district, following LISD transfer guidelines. Once approved, your child/ren will keep their spot(s) at their designated campus.
We have received many questions about why the Dual Language program is not part of the Virtual Learning Pathway. The reason for this is:
- The Virtual Learning Pathway will be utilizing a specific software program for each content area and this software program does not include the development of biliteracy in any content area so it is not possible to recreate the two-way program that our students receive with in-person instruction from teachers. Similar to many classes at the middle school and high school levels that are not being offered virtually, Dual Language is a very specialized program that cannot be replicated in an at-home environment.
- Although many of the Texas Essential Knowledge Skills in Language Arts may be similar in English and Spanish, some of the instruction differs in the way it is taught due to the foundations of the languages. We do not simply translate the Spanish curriculum, as it is not the best instructional practice. The Dual Language Program is implemented through a framework that is supported by classroom curriculum, instruction, materials, and proficiency-based support. All of these components rely on linguistic features of the classroom environment that collectively cannot be replicable in a virtual setting.
What about students who are English Language Learners, how will they receive the state required bilingual instruction?
- English Learners who choose the Virtual Learning Pathway will receive the TEA compliance Transitional bilingual/late exit model. In this model, students will use their primary language as a resource while acquiring full proficiency in English.
What about students who are Spanish Learners participating in a two-way dual language program, how can they continue learning Spanish while in the Virtual Learning Pathway?
- Spanish learners who choose the Virtual Learning Pathway will receive instruction in English. Spanish resources will be available in case parents desire to sustain the Spanish language in a supplemental manner. The Dual Language Program will work with parents to access a virtual resource that can be accessed from home, and students will practice the Spanish asynchronously.
For all 2020-21 Return to School and COVID-19 information, visit: