The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) officially recognized students on May 19 for their linguistic accomplishments. More than 50 students from throughout the county received the State Seal of Biliteracy, established by California Assembly Bill 815.
Throughout Sacramento County, more than 650 students earned the Seal of Biliteracy. It is awarded to seniors who have demonstrated English competency, plus competency in another language, by meeting specific criteria.
Serving as keynote speakers for the ceremony were Pablo Espinoza, a Special Projects Media Consultant for the California Speaker's Office of Member Services, and his wife Nancy Chaires Espinoza, who is currently on special assignment with the California Department of Education to improve the effectiveness and oversight of the Migrant Education Program.
Students demonstrate English competency by scoring proficient on the California Standards Test in English language arts, earning good grades in all high school English classes required for high school graduation. In addition, students must demonstrate competency in another language by taking a four year course of study in a world language or passing a test, such as the Advanced Placement exam.
In addition to English, this year's Seal of Biliteracy recipients in Sacramento County are proficient in seventeen other languages including: Arabic, Cantonese, French, German, Hindi, Hmong, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Mandarin, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, Turkish, Ukrainian, Urdu and Vietnamese. Several of the students earned Seals in multiple languages.
The following Sacramento Country school districts collaborated in this year's Seal of Biliteracy program:
- Center Joint Unified School District
- Folsom Cordova Unified School District
- Galt Joint Union High School District
- Natomas Unified School District
- River Delta Unified School District
- Sacramento City Unified School District
- San Juan Unified School District
- Twin Rivers Unified School District
- Visions in Education Charter School
Through their combined efforts, hundreds of local students qualified for the State Seal of Biliteracy in 2014.