Indiana Dual Language

December 2019

School City of Hammond- Irving Elementary School

Irving Elementary School began this fall with three kindergarten strands and two first grade strands of 80-20 two-way dual language immersion. The motivation for opening this program was to close the achievement gap between ELs and native English speakers, to promote biliteracy as a 21st century skill, and to ensure additive bilingualism by providing an educational structure allowing students to keep and develop their home language.

The School City of Hammond has held a Boot Camp for parents for the past three years. This is a highly successful event in which parents attend classes to learn English to better support their children. The fourth cohort started this fall. There is a positive relationship formed with the parents, and dual language will enhance this relationship and involvement.

Every success also comes with challenges, and Irving Elementary School has experienced those as well. As with most programs, there is a struggle to find highly effective DLI teachers for the 2020-2021 school year. The program also struggles to find bilingual substitutes. Because of the successful start and interest in the program, another challenge will be to find a way to open up the program to all students in the district.

Irving Elementary School is off to a wonderful start because of the hard work and intentional planning that has been completed by leaders from the School City of Hammond. Irving Elementary School is a welcome addition to Indiana dual language.

November Was The Month of Awards

IFLTA held their first Multil-IN-gual awards this year during the conference. Nathan Williamson, IDOE Director of Title Grants and Support, received the Dr. Walter Bartz Distinguished World Language Administrator Award. This award recognizes the vital work that is accomplished at the state and local levels by administrators passionate about the importance of high quality language teaching and bilingualism in Indiana schools.

At the annual Hispanic Heritage Festival Breakfast at Forest Glen Elementary School of MSD Lawrence Township, Erika Tran was surprised with an award that recognizes her advocacy for English learners and her leadership in dual language. In addition, Caterina Blitzer spoke at the event. Caterina has been and continues to be a powerful advocate for languages in Indiana.

Lawrenceburg Primary Featured on WCPO in Cincinnati

Lawrenceburg classroom teaches students Spanish through innovative immersion methods

Equity Walks

I had the pleasure of being invited to Zionsville Community Schools to participate in an equity walk. This is a wonderful step towards cultural proficiency, and if you scan through the rubrics listed below, the equity components align with the essential elements of cultural proficiency. It is most beneficial to have walks done by people outside of the school system who represent a diverse background when students are not present in the building. If you have any questions or interest in this process, please let me know. The two versions of the rubrics are attached. -Nicole

Teaching for Biliteracy Sign-Up

Please fill out the link below to sign up for the two day workshop. IASP will be hosting us at 11025 E. 25th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46229. Remember that each district may only send 1-2 participants to begin. Thank you!
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Positive Changes for ENL Course

The Office of English Learning and Migrant Education is excited to announce some changes to the English as a New Language course that will greatly benefit Indiana’s English learners.

  • For English/ Language Arts credit (course code 1012), up to 8 credits accrued may be counted as the required English/ Language Arts credits for all diplomas if the ENL course work addresses Indiana’s Academic Standards for E/LA and is based on general E/LA curriculum and the student’s ILP.

  • For World Languages credit (course code 2188), up to 8 credits accrued may be counted as World Language credits for all diplomas if ENL course work addresses Indiana’s Academic Standards for World Languages and is taken concurrently with another E/LA course.

Please share this information with secondary counselors in your district to ensure that ELs benefit from this new guidance. Contact me with any questions!

La Cosecha 2019

As always, La Cosecha was a time of growth and learning for dual language educators from Indiana. Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of attending a conference such as La Cosecha is the people you meet and the connections that are made. Below are some questions to think about from one session as well as a resource that was shared from another.

During La Cosecha, I was able to attend a session from Barbara Kennedy that had quite a bit of focus on the language allocation plan (LAP) for programs. Barbara Kennedy presented last spring for our dual language teachers during our CAL workshop. Her website is Here are some questions to consider about your current LAP:

  • Is the LAP published and posted for the public to see?
  • Is your LAP complete? Does it include both languages and the content areas?
  • Is your LAP comprehensive? Does it include all grade levels?
  • Is your LAP detailed and include calculations of time with percentages?
  • Does your LAP allow for adequate planning and co-planning time?

While in the workshop, Kris Nicholls shared her Instructional Minutes Calculator with me. I have included the sample spreadsheet and one for your use as well. She did recommend creating a copy and saving for use as the formulas are locked in the file. If you have any questions regarding this tool, please contact Kris Nicholls, Ph.D at