Back to News

In Any Language, These Students are Winners

Students earn county award for bilingual/biliteracy achievement

girl communicating with other countries

Thirty-nine Campbell Union School District (CUSD) students are earning the Middle School Pathway Award Towards the Seal of Biliteracy Award this year from the Santa Clara County Office of Education, marking a milestone toward earning the State Seal of Biliteracy at the end of high school. 

The Pathway award recognizes students who, by the end of 5th and/or 8th grade, have demonstrated a commitment to becoming biliterate and who have reached a degree of proficiency in both English and at least one another language. Some of the 39 students earned the award for proficiency in multiple languages, including: Farsi, French, Greek, Hindi, Japanese, Kannada, Mandarin, Marathi, Russian, Sanskrit, Serbo-Croation, Spanish and Tamil.

“We’re proud of these students’ achievements. The process is rigorous and they persevered through challenging tasks during a pandemic and remote learning,” said Superintendent Shelly Viramontez. “Research indicates that being bilingual and biliterate fosters mental dexterity, builds cultural appreciation, and validates the rich cultural backgrounds of our students.”

To earn the award, the CUSD students had to complete an oral presentation in their target language, reach an identified proficiency level in English-Language Arts, and be students in good standing who are classified as either English Only (EO), Reclassified Fluent English Proficient (RFEP), or English Learner (EL), and take at least one year in a World Language.

“We offer students opportunities to learn languages and build cultural competency so they can have success in our schools and beyond. If they go on to earn the Seal of Biliteracy in high school, their efforts can be evidence of skills that are attractive to future employers and college admissions offices,” said Denise Kilpatrick, Coordinator of English Language Development Programs.