Rationale and Purpose for Lexington Pathways
Rationale for the Lexington Pathway Awards
Supports the goals of the International Baccalaureate program at Lexington
- The International Baccalaureate® (IB) is committed to supporting multilingualism as a fundamental part of increasing intercultural understanding and international-mindedness, and is equally committed to extending access to an IB education for students from a variety of cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
- Brings awareness of and appreciation for home languages within the Lexington community
- Potential to strengthen and enhance the value of learning Spanish for English speakers at Lexington
- Community & Global Citizenship: Students will participate in learning opportunities that foster “Service Above Self” (Community Service) and Global Mindedness/Citizenship.
- Student learning opportunities will foster international mindedness such as perspective taking, empathy building, valuing inclusivity and diversity, investigating the world, communicating effectively, and taking action.
- Explore and implement the addition of World Language instruction in grades K-5. Strengthen Middle School world language offerings.
- Educating students for global citizenship
- Equity and Inclusion
Supports Los Gatos Saratoga Union High School District (LGSUHSD) students towards achieving the California State Seal of Biliteracy
- The State Seal of Biliteracy (see this link too), codified in California Education Code sections 51460-51464, provides recognition to high school students who have demonstrated a high proficiency in speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages in addition to English.
- Supports the Santa Clara County Office of Education commitments to 21st Century goals.
- The SCCOE urges “all districts to establish a biliteracy pathway, so students have the opportunity to gain necessary skills to be successful in 21st century college and careers.”
Supports additional language learning (including English language learners)
- A strong foundation in the home language facilitates the learning of a second language.
- Research shows that continuing to use home languages alongside their new language acquisition will make the process of learning a new language (e.g. English) faster and easier.
Supports Social-Emotional Development
- Children who see that their home language is valued build a positive and healthy self-identity and stronger sense of pride in their cultural and linguistic heritage.
- If home languages are valued and celebrated within the school environment then this sends a powerful message to pupils about their identity.
- Recognizing and celebrating minority languages as being equally as important as the dominant language (e.g. integrating them during events and assemblies) builds self-esteem for multilingual speakers.
- Valuing multilingualism fosters a welcoming school environment of inclusivity and diversity.
Facilitates Deeper Relationships
- Children and parents who share the same language are able to interact with each other in more meaningful ways
- Family and community members who only speak the home language (e.g., grandparents, friends, relatives in the home country) are able to contribute to the child’s cultural growth, increase their vocabulary and communication skills, and share valuable learning experiences.
- Recognizing and celebrating minority languages as being equally as important as the dominant language increases respect for multilingualism within the school community
- Multilingual students are generally flexible thinkers and problem solvers and have an easier time understanding math concepts and solving word problems.
Prepares students for the Future
- There is a growing need for individuals who are proficient in two or more languages in today’s world economy and socio-political climate.
Purpose for the Lexington Pathway Awards
- To demonstrate the importance of multiliteracy and language diversity in our school and world
- To show that mastery of two or more languages is an important skill in our global society
- To encourage all Lexington students to pursue multi-literacy and eventually the Seal of Biliteracy
- To honor students who have accomplished proficiency in their home language
- To value diversity and inclusion within the community