School districts across the nation are increasing second language instruction in the early grades. Some are doing so through traditional foreign language classes, others are opting for dual immersion
programs, with certification upon high school graduation.
In California, the Napa Valley Unified School District is opening up second language instruction to more students, and earlier grades are part of that effort. District staff shared recommendations with the board of trustees to make Spanish classes available in all middle schools, and provide high school math, science, and history teaching in Spanish. A committee of district staff, parents, and teachers has also recommended including American Sign Language at Napa High. This class is already offered at Vintage High School
Hiring new teachers and expanding the curriculum to give more children unbroken language instruction from elementary through high school could take up the 2015-16 school year. Expanding the courses is not only needed for work preparation and cultural awareness, but also to help students meet requirements for state universities.