Northport Elementary to Offer Dual Language Options
The Robbinsdale School District will launch a new dual language program at Northport Elementary in Brooklyn Center. The school has a large number of Spanish speaking students which prompted the school to explore dual language options.
“We were looking for something to help boost the literacy rate of our students,” said Frederico Rowe, principal of Northport Elementary. “In addition to that, we did a survey. The group of students who felt the most disconnected from our school, was our Spanish-speaking students.”
Embracing Spanish Language and Culture
Northport Elementary started looking at ways that it could not only teach the Spanish language but also Hispanic culture. The first phase of the program will start this fall with a kindergarten class getting instruction in Spanish. Eventually, all K-through-second graders will have the option to be taught in Spanish. As students transition to older grades, they will receive instruction in Spanish 50-percent of the time. Research shows that students who learn a second language often perform at higher levels.
“Part of that comes out of the cognitive benefits,” said Patrick Brown, dual language coordinator at Northport. “Students who are acquiring a second language and learning to navigate a different culture are better able to process and sort information. They develop those critical thinking skills that will also support them in areas of math, science and social studies. Those skills wouldn’t be as prevalent in a monolingual setting.”
Northport Elementary is also a turnaround arts school. School administrators say that programming will continue. For more information about the Northport elementary click here.