Elkhorn Village Elementary School, located in West Sacramento, California, and a part of the Washington Unified School District, has a long history of offering bilingual education for Spanish-speaking families. Elkhorn Village faced many obstacles in keeping and strengthening their dual immersion program. Originally, the school provided Spanish instruction in a K-6 program as a strand within a mainstream school.
However, throughout the years, due to state assessments and Proposition 227 – changing the way that "Limited English Proficient" (LEP) students were taught in California, specifically requiring California public schools to teach LEP students in special classes that are taught in English – the program became a K-3 Early Exit Transitional Program. The bilingual staff at Elkhorn would have vertical articulation meetings on their own time to discuss the long-term goals for students in this Program.
In 2012, resources were limited for Bilingual classrooms and there were no supports in place for students in the program once they completed 3rd grade. The Elkhorn Village staff decided that if given the opportunity, they would transition to a Dual Language Program.
Many of the students in the Transitional Program were successful due to the hard work and dedication between staff and families; that being said, the staff felt they needed to implement a long-term plan for their students to become bilingual.
Elkhorn Village Elementary began it's planning process in 2014 when they had enough grant funding used to create a Program Specialist position. District and site administration approved the position of a Program Specialist to research and establish a plan to move from a K-3 Transitional program to a K- 8 Dual Immersion Program. This position was funded for two years.
Continue to the next page to learn more about Elkhorn Village Elementary School's planning process...