The Seattle Times article on June 26, 2015 announced: “Hundreds of bilingual graduates earn new state seal proving their language skills.” They reported on the recent recognition of students earning the State Seal of Biliteracy for the first time: “Seattle Public Schools awarded the seal to 195 graduates this year, and Highline Public Schools awarded it to 150.”
Then the article was picked up as the lead article in the ASCD SmartBrief, so the word was out nationally. By Monday, June 29, I had received an email from our former Spanish language consultant in Washington state who has returned to Madrid last fall, Eva González Abad, who had seen the announcement there. So word was out around the world.
State Seal of Biliteracy
Late May and early June in Seattle we hurried to get Seal of Biliteracy medallions to all qualifying seniors to wear during graduation. We heard from some schools about how excited the students were to receive this honor. Now we’ve prepared envelopes with an example of how to affix the Seal of Biliteracy “sticker” to their diplomas once they receive them later this summer. We have also provided letters with the test results that qualified them for the Seal so they could share those with colleges and employers.
One community language teacher asked me earlier this spring, What does it mean? Why would a student want to have the State Seal of Biliteracy? To be honest, it doesn’t mean much yet… because business and higher education are not yet aware of this new flood of very linguistically capable students who will be entering college and the workforce in the coming years. But word travels fast, doesn’t it? Maybe one day America will be known as a language learning mecca.
Michele Anciaux Aoki, Ph.D.
International Education Administrator
Seattle Public Schools
The Global Leadership Summer Institute for Educators, designed by teachers for teachers, will take place August 3-7, 2015 at Seattle University. Join K-12 teachers from all around the region for a week-long workshop, and walk away with free resources, new approaches, and a community of support to begin integrating global issues and sustainable solutions into your classroom. Educators will learn to build a democratic classroom where students enter as learners and leave as empowered and engaged global leaders.
Global Leadership is both a methodology and a course designed to empower and engage students by developing leadership skills in the classroom. This Summer Institute will provide teachers of all content areas with a highly effective approach to creating a climate of mutual respect and shared ownership in which student leaders become engaged global leaders both in and out of the classroom.
The 2015 Morocco Language & Leadership Summer Institute with OneWorld Now! will take high school students on a life changing journey to develop intercultural leadership skills, explore Moroccan and Arab culture through home stays and historical sites, and learn Arabic language. OneWorld Now! has 12 years’ experience sending students in our Global Leadership Program abroad. This is the first year they are opening their summer study abroad programs to students who are not enrolled in their academic year program. Read more about the program. The application is due on March 31.
Student-planned and student-led, the OWN Get Global Youth Conference is designed to empower youth and young social entrepreneurs to take action on important global issues.
Get Global 2015 – April 25 at the University of Washington
OneWorld Now! Seattle and OneWorld Now! Hawai‘i will come together to present dynamic workshops and inspiring “OWN Talks” to foster meaningful and intentional dialogue about the intersection of social justice issues, global issues, and the role of youth. OWN Get Global will also feature a global fashion and talent show. Lunch includes cuisine from around the world. This event is for high school students and is one of few conferences in the nation that is organized and facilitated exclusively by high school youth!
Student workshops will fall under the following categories:
Consumption and Consumerism
Peace and Conflict
Population and Carrying Capacity
OWN Get Global will be a free event for registered participants. Registration closes on April 24, 2015. OWN Get Global will take place on Saturday, April 25, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the University of Washington Seattle Campus at the Ethnic Cultural Center (3931 Brooklyn Ave NE, Seattle).
Miye Aoki-Kramer is a senior at Garfield High School in Seattle. She has had a very international education from Kindergarten at John Stanford International School (where she was in Japanese Immersion) to Hamilton, then on to Garfield. During her junior year, she lived and went to school for a year in Italy. You’ll be hearing more from her as she continues to update the blogs and brings other student voices to Internationaledwa!
The University of Washington recently successfully completed the “Russian Classroom” project. Five months of professional development courses for teachers of Russian language, consisting of both classroom-based and online instruction, culminated in a two-day workshop at the UW attended by more than 60 teachers and university instructors of Russian, history and culture. They gathered on the campus of the University and the “Rodnik” School of Russian language to attend lectures, take part in a roundtable discussion and in master classes led by experts in the field of teaching Russian language from the University of Washington and Moscow State Pedagogical University. In late May, 34 participants received a certificate of successful completion of the course. They praised the work of the instructors and course organizers and expressed their desire to participate in methodological seminars at the University of Washington again next year.
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While this program was focused on Russian language, I believe it can be a model for how to work effectively with community-based language programs in any language to increase the effectiveness of their language teachers and connect them with resources and expertise both here and abroad.
Michele Anciaux Aoki, Ph.D.
International Education Administrator, Seattle Public Schools
Consultant to the “Russian Classroom” Project
Thanks to the generous support of the Road Map Project Rapid Resource Fund, the video for the World Language Credit Program has been translated into the 11 top languages in South King County (with 2 more – Arabic and Russian – coming soon!). This video highlights the benefits of students’ earning credits for languages they know. (Although the video is focused on the 7 Road Map districts in South King County, students across the state have been testing and earning credits since 2012.)
Learn what it takes to have a career in the Foreign Service! Students can attend a Careers in the Foreign Service panel from 3:45-5:00 PM on Thursday, April 9, 2015 at the Diplomacy Begins Here regional summit. The cost is $5.
Ambassador Lewis Lukens – Diplomat in Residence for the Northwest, U.S. Department of State
Ms. Thao Hong – Boeing Commercial Airplanes & Ret. Foreign Service Officer
Ambassador Roger A. Meece – Former Ambassador to Malawi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Moderator: Mr. Chris Mrozowski – Branch Chief, IVLP On Demand Division, Office of International Visitors, U.S. Department of State
On April 9, 2015, join the World Affairs Council of Seattle, Global Ties U.S., and the U.S. Department of State at the Diplomacy Begins Here regional summit in Seattle! Seattle is one of eight cities selected to hold a regional summit.
The summits celebrate the 75th anniversary of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) – the premier U.S. Department of State professional development exchange program – in addition to other exchange programs and activities in our region. The World Affairs Council of Seattle supports these exchanges through its International Visitor Program.