Still Time to Register for EastLake’s Dual Immersion Program

Looking to build upon its early success, EastLake Elementary will grow its Dual-Language Immersion (DI) Program to include Kindergarten through Second Grade in the 2012-13 school year. There’s still time to enroll your child in the program. The program goals are to promote English and Spanish biliteracy, bilingualism, and biculturalism through formal academic language instruction and academic language development.

 In addition, a change to the program’s instructional model was presented at a February meeting of all current Kinder and First Grade families. Equal exposure to two languages, ensuring 50 percent of the instructional minutes in each school day is devoted to either language (Spanish or English) is referred to as a 50/50 Dual-Language Immersion model or Two-Way Language Immersion. EastLake’s new 50/50 model maintains the original program goals of biliteracy, bilingualism, and biculturalism. Now, for half the school day, students will learn English Language arts and mathematics in English. The other half of the school day will be conducted studying Spanish Language Arts and science/social science, in Spanish, in a different classroom with another teacher.

 “It’s exciting to see our program grow, and to meet the needs of more students and parents in achieving their goal of foreign language acquisition” explains Principal Dr. Eric Banatao. “Effective communication in two languages will be a vital skill for the 21st century and will provide lifelong opportunities.”

Preliminary survey data acquired since the informational meeting indicates strong school-community interest to move forward with program adjustments to EastLake’s Dual-Language Immersion Program. To view the February 1 presentation materials, please click here.

A program shift to the 50/50 Dual-Language Immersion model creates several program advantages for EastLake, including:

  • Language balance. Students will develop English language arts and Spanish Language arts proficiency (reading, writing, speaking, and listening) through a 50/50 instructional model beginning in Kindergarten, and as students advance through grade 6.
  • A true language-immersion experience with two language teachers in two separate classroom environments, at each grade-level, each with the primary purpose of developing literacy and academic language in English and Spanish. Students will rotate between languages and teachers.
  • Allow newcomers to the Dual Immersion program. Previously acquired language instruction, in English or Spanish, will provide a language foundation to support simultaneous learning of two languages. Student-models of each language will promote language learning and enrich learning environments. Increased program participation and more students meeting program goals will allow for teacher teams and professional collaboration at each grade level.

Program reservation forms are currently being accepted. Current DI program participants (home-residents and zone-transfers) will receive enrollment priority. Home-resident newcomers to the program will receive priority over zone-transfer newcomers.  All program newcomers are welcome to apply and to reserve a seat in next year’s program. But hurry. Program space may be limited.

 If you have questions regarding 2012-13 Dual-Language Immersion Program enrollment, or were unable to attend an orientation meeting on February 27, but interested in reserving DI program placement, please contact Dr. Eric Banatao, EastLake principal, at (619) 421-4798 ext. 2899, or .

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