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  Wednesday July 23rd, 2014    

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WAPS Board votes for enhanced language plan by fall (05/05/2013)
By Sarah Squires

The Winona Area Public Schools (WAPS) Board of Education was presented with a list of ways the district could add language studies from its youngest to its oldest students.

It wasn’t the first time the board was given ideas for enhanced language options, but it was the first time detailed options were put on the table. From a complete immersion offering at the kindergarten level at one school, to a percentage of time devoted to studies in a foreign language at multiple sites, to restoring Spanish 1 classes to seventh grade, the concepts included ideas for every grade level.

The board did not chose from the list of options. (See sidebar.) Instead, it voted to instruct district staff to continue to study the ideas to come up with a recommendation for a language program, to be presented to the board no later than October. The goal, if the recommendation is well received by the community and the district can afford it, would be to implement the new program during the fall of 2014.

Including some language offering at each elementary school was an option, but Superintendent Scott Hannon said spreading the program that thin would mean a shorter lesson that would include more of a cultural introduction to a language rather than immersion or intense language studies, because staffing a large-scale language program district-wide would be expensive. Board member Steve Schild has long objected to a language offering that was contained in one building, preferring that all students in the district had access to any language program.

Other board members, however, seemed more excited about an option that would allow for more intense language learning at a particular school or schools. One of the options would provide for Spanish 1 at the seventh grade level, which would allow a student who had not been enrolled in an earlier language program to begin studies at the middle school level.

Kindergarten Options

All Schools Option

Students in one section only receive 20-30 minutes of Foreign Language Immersion every other day

Single School Option #1

Students in one section receive Immersion Foreign Language 20-100 percent of their day

Single School Option #2

Students in two sections receive Foreign Language Immersion 20-50 percent of their day

Single School Option #3

Students in three sections receive Foreign Language Immersion 20-30 percent of their day

Single School Option #4

Students in two sections receive Foreign Language Immersion 20-50 percent of their day and students in a third section do not receive Foreign Language instruction

Single School Option #5

K/1 teachers co-teach their students. Foreign Language Immersion is 20-50 percent

Elementary 1-4

Immersion Social Studies and Language Arts are taught in a Flex Period 20-100 percent every day depending on Immersion model selected

Middle School

Grades 5-7

Immersion Social Studies and Language Arts are taught in a Flex Period every day in grades 5-7

Grade 7

Non-Immersion students may elect to take Spanish 1

Grade 8

Immersion Students take Immersion Spanish and Immersion Global Studies every day

Grade 8

Non-Immersion students may elect to take Spanish 1

Grade 8

Or Non-Immersion students may elect to take a beginning second language option

High School

Grades 9-12

Students may elect Spanish 1-4 or Spanish AP

Grades 9-12

Students may elect German 1-4 or German AP

Grades 9-11

Students may elect Spanish 1 or German 1 in grades 9, 10, or 11

Immersion Student Track

Immersion students would elect Foreign Language Advanced Placement or Immersion electives as developed 

 

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