- Gwinnett County School District
- GCPS News
GCPS students recognized for foreign language proficiency
November 7, 2023
More than 250 Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) students have been honored for their foreign language proficiency by the state of Georgia, more than any other school district in the state. A total of 226 GCPS high school students earned the 2023 Georgia Department of Education Seal of Biliteracy. The honor recognizes high school graduates who have attained a high level of proficiency in speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages besides English. To earn the seal, students must have demonstrated bilingualism and biliteracy in both English (by achieving a minimum letter grade “B” average on all English Language Arts courses required for graduation) and high proficiency in an additional world language (measured by success on a state-approved assessment such as Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate). An additional 28 middle school students earned the Global Seal of Biliteracy. The Global Seal of Biliteracy certification verifies that a student has achieved the intermediate-mid or higher level of proficiency per the uniform standard set by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL).
“GCPS is one of the most diverse school systems in the United States, and our district has once again celebrated more Global Seal student recipients than any other in Georgia,” Dr. Jon Valentine, GCPS’ director of World Languages and Dual Language Immersion shares. “We are a system that views student diversity and, in this case, language and cultural diversity as a strength. In every conceivable career in the future, an employee with proficiency in another language will not only be first considered for the best jobs but will be able to navigate cultural diversity with a well-honed acumen that will enable them to thrive in an increasingly global workforce.”
The Georgia Seal of Biliteracy was established in 2016 to encourage students to study foreign languages; recognize and promote foreign language instruction in public schools; certify attainment of biliteracy; provide employers with a method to identify people with language and biliteracy skills; and provide universities with a method to recognize and give academic credit to applicants seeking admission. “Our teachers work very hard to provide these opportunities for our students, and this is testimony not only to the work of these wonderful students but to that of world languages and dual language immersion teachers throughout GCPS who have developed these well-articulated, high-quality programs of study,” Dr. Valentine adds.
Gwinnett students earning the Seals of Biliteracy represented the following languages: Chinese, Spanish, French, German, and Latin. They attended the following schools:
Paul Duke Stem
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