District Departments » Academic Programs » Bilingual/ESL Department

Bilingual/ESL Department

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The Union City Board of Education offers Bilingual Education to students from grades Pre-K through grade 12. Students are taught in their native language. Our transitional bilingual program is for English Language Learners (ELL). The program model provides Spanish-speaking English language learners a gradual progression from native language assisted instruction to three levels of English: beginner, intermediate and advanced. All content area instructors are dually certified and promote one of the main goals of the program: a mainstream environment for the ELL student.

A Port of Entry program is also available in Union City. This program is intended for newly arrived ELL students. Students are taught in their native language and also receive ESL instruction on a daily basis. Students’ progress is monitored and assessed every six to eight weeks. After each cycle of assessment, new objectives are implemented by the classroom teacher.
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NJ Seal of BiliteracyDuring the 216th Legislative Session, Governor Christie signed A-4415/S-3279 (Diegnan, Garcia, Pinkin/Turner, Ruiz) which establishes the State Seal of Biliteracy to recognize high school graduates who have attained a high level of bilingual proficiency. Appearing on a certificate, the Seal of Biliteracy is a statement of accomplishment for gaining competency in two or more languages and is viewed as an asset when applying for a job or for college admission. This also allows students from diverse backgrounds to be recognized for the inherent value of their native language as well as the added value of another language acquired. During the 2018-19 school year, Union City High School joined the Seal of Biliteracy program. 45 students in the Class of 2019 were awarded this distinction based on their AP Spanish scores and English proficiency as measured by Language Testing AAPPL assessment. For 2020, 71 graduating seniors from Union City High School and Jose Marti Stem Academy are expected to earn this honor and designation. In the future, the World Languages department hopes to expand the number of students earning this honor by offering the option for alternative language assessments, demonstrating our district’s commitment to linguistic and cultural excellence, and the development of global citizens. If you have questions, please contact:
 
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