[lg policy] Language Policy of York International School

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Tue Jul 31 15:25:16 UTC 2012

York International School
Language Policy
Language Philosophy:

We believe that:
-language is essential to all learning
-language should be supported, developed, and valued
-language reflects culture
-language is inherent to being human
-all teachers are language teachers
-the support of mother tongue is essential to language acquisition of the
-York International supports open-minded and productive members of society
through an inquiry based language community

Language Profile:

Language Percentage of
English 49.4%
Spanish 47.8%
Other (Japanese, Hmong,
Cantonese, Nepali)
The majority of students at York International have English and Spanish as
native language. Students with other native tongues such as Japanese and
Hmong occupy
a very small portion of our population. In the primary grades (K-2) many
native Spanish
speakers communicate in their mother tongue. At the intermediate grades
(3-5) most
native Spanish speakers are able to communicate effectively in both English
and Spanish,
the exception being students who have not been in an English speaking
system, and enter the school at the intermediate level. All student
languages are identified
prior to the start of the academic year and differentiated strategies are
Language Instruction:
 English instruction is provided to all students in all academic content
 Sheltered English instruction is a primary method used to develop
language for
second language learners in conjunction with small group literacy support
 All teachers will encourage the development of native languages
 Mcrell, Language for Learning/Thinking/Writing, and small group
support first and second language learners.

Second Language Instruction
 Students whose mother tongue is English will be exposed to Spanish
beginning in
Kindergarten through Spanish course offerings.
 Each year the students will build upon the knowledge gained in the
previous years
through Spanish specials rotations.
 Students will be exposed to and be able to express ideas in both English

Mother Tongue Support
 Communication is available in Spanish and other languages as necessary
 Translators available for conferences in any language needed
 Language A monitored (WIDA standards) and recorded in ELL plans (Alpine

 Online access to language resources


Our school and library/ media center are equipped with resources in other
languages and different cultures to help meet student needs. The
library/media center
contains fiction and non-fiction texts to aid in development and
maintenance of the
mother tongue. We will continue, as resources allow, procuring materials
that support
content and language development. Classrooms are currently adding
resources that match the unit of inquiry being taught at each respective
grade level.
Ongoing professional training is available to support teacher knowledge in


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