House of Representatives
Office of Program Research
This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.
Brief Description: Expanding dual language and bilingual instruction for early learners through secondary students.
Sponsors: Representatives Ortiz-Self, Walkinshaw, Bergquist, Moscoso, Hudgins, Pollet and Santos.
Hearing Date: 2/12/15
Staff: Megan Wargacki (786-7194).
Dual Language Programs.
A Dual Language program is an instructional model that provides content-based instruction to students in two languages where the goal is for the students, over a number of years of participation in the program, to become proficient and literate in both languages, while also meeting high academic standards in all subject areas. Other terminology that is commonly used for one of the variations of this type of program model is Two-way Dual Language, One-way Dual Language, Partial Immersion, Full Immersion, etc. Typically, programs begin at kindergarten or first grade and continue through elementary school, and, if possible, into middle and high school.
A number of these types of programs currently exist in a variety of districts, including Bellevue, Evergreen, Highline, Kennewick, Mt. Vernon, North Shore, Pasco, Seattle, Vancouver, Wenatchee, and Yakima. These programs offer instruction in Spanish, Japanese, or Mandarin Chinese.
Dual Language Teachers.
The Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB), a 13-member board, establishes the policies and requirements for the preparation and certification of educators, including approval of endorsements. An endorsement is the subject area in which a certified educator is authorized to teach, along with designated grade levels for that area. There are 42 endorsements in Washington, not including a large number of career and technical education endorsements. In addition to subjects, such as Math, Science, English, and History, there are approved endorsements in Bilingual Education, and English Language Learners, both for all grade levels. Between 2012 and 2014 the public and private teacher preparation programs produce 12 Bilingual Education Endorsements and 571 English Language Learners Endorsements.
Early Achievers Program.
In 2007 the quality rating and improvement system for the early care and education system in Washington, called the Early Achievers program, was created. The Early Achievers program establishes a common set of expectations and standards that define, measure, and improve the quality of early learning and care settings. The Department of Early Learning (DEL) completed state-wide implementation of the Early Achievers program in July 2013. As of December 2014, 2,266 licensed providers are participating in the Early Achievers program.
Summary of Bill:
The K-12 dual language expansion grant program is created to build and expand well-implemented, sustainable dual language programs and create state-level infrastructure dedicated to dual language instruction. Two established programs are incentivized to mentor two new programs, with funds provided for expansion and implementation. The Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) must administer the grant program, including prioritizing grants to certain districts, and dedicate a staff member to provide technical assistance and support to dual language programs.
The dual language teacher pipeline scholarship program is created to build capacity for bilingual and dual language programming by developing a pipeline for dual language teachers, from early childhood to K-12 education. The professional educator standards board must administer the grant program, including prioritizing grants to candidates with a foreign degree or credential who are willing to work in programs awarded grants to expand dual language instruction, and dedicate a staff member to support the development of bilingual teachers.
The early learning bilingual and dual language grant program is created to:
provide the technical and financial support needed to increase bilingual and dual language instruction in early learning settings where there are a high number of English language learners; and
create a statewide strategy for increasing bilingual education among providers enrolled in the Early Achievers quality rating and improvement system.
The DEL must administer the grant program, including prioritizing grants to certain programs, and dedicate a staff members to work with nonprofit organizations. Funds must be provided to institute lead coaches at nonprofit organizations that will provide specialized training and consultation.
The SPI, the PESB, and the DEL must report to the Legislature on grants awarded, student outcome data, and in the case of scholarships, the number of scholarships funded and the demographic data on participants by November 1, 2017.
Fiscal Note: Requested on 02/02/15.
Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.