As the hosts of the national dual language directory, we work to honor dual language programs across the country. The idea of the directory is to help parents find local dual language programs for their children, help teachers find dual language programs to find jobs, and to show potential administrators other nearby dual language programs.
This week, we are showcasing the The Dean P. Corey Academy of Fine Arts and Dual Language in Arlington Independent School District (AISD) in Arlington, TX. Their district realized the need to accelerate the effectiveness of their bilingual model districtwide. At the same time, their new superintendent requested a district-wide facilities audit to evaluate campus usage and a curriculum audit to evaluate programming. The results of those extensive studies led to the creation of two student choice campuses at the elementary level, Corey Academy and Jones Academy. Both schools have the same programming model and were intended to draw students to their campuses which would relieve overcrowding at other campuses and provide unique options for in-district and out-of-district students.
When the decision was made to create two campuses which would be fine-arts rich and dual-language focused, a visioning committee of district leadership, curriculum and instruction, and fine arts and world language staff began to research dual language models. (In Texas, the Gomez and Gomez model is most prominent). The visioning committee was struck by the format and success of Utah Dual Language Immersion model and that became the foundation for the Corey Academy dual language program. The proposal for redesign of the facilities and programming of these two campuses was developed and the funding plan was included in $670 million-dollar bond election which addressed many district needs.
Once the bond was approved, the World Language staff began tailoring existing curriculum into their 50/50 Two-way Dual Language Immersion Model that they have implemented. The Academy requested outside consultants to help develop the model and worked with the Human Resources department to hire the necessary implementation team. In their model, math and science are taught in the target Spanish language by one teacher and reading and social studies are taught in English by the partner teacher. Bridging across those content areas occurs in the partner classroom.
With a high-level view of the outcome goals, they had a game plan for what they wanted to accomplish. Since Arlington ISD had not implemented dual language before their program, the academy was learning as they went. Again, when schools were implementing dual language in Texas, the Gomez and Gomez model was the predominant model. There were not local or regional groups implementing in the way that the Academy was doing so.
Continue reading to find out more about Corey Academy...