In 2021, Taiwan adopted a policy called “Bilingual 2030,” aiming to become a bilingual English-Mandarin Chinese nation by 2030. Demand for professionals with English proficiency has greatly increased in the country, and the policy has a twofold vision: help Taiwan’s workforce connect with the world and attract international business to Taiwan, increasing the number of high-quality jobs.
To learn more about established dual-language learning programs and other relevant topics, a contingent of 48 Taiwanese education professionals traveled to California through an exchange program facilitated by UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education and the Fulbright Taiwan foundation. Comprised of secondary and university representatives, 14 delegates and representatives from UC Davis were hosted by the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) on February 2, while a group of 35 Taiwanese elementary and junior high school teachers took a bus ride to visit a Spanish-English dual language immersion school.
At SCOE, Deputy Superintendent Nancy Herota welcomed the group and introduced SCOE Director Graciela García-Torres, M.Ed., who gave a presentation about SCOE’s Multilingual Education Programs. She spoke about efforts in Sacramento County, including support for SCOE schools, local education agencies, and the region. The presentation was followed by a discussion session about topics the group wanted to learn more about, including bilingual integration (led by García-Torres), weather and climate change curriculum through the Next Generation Science Standards (led by SCOE Science Curriculum Specialist Amy Kraft), and general education services (led by SCOE Assistant Superintendent Brent Malicote).
The remaining Taiwanese teachers took a bus ride to visit the Language Academy of Sacramento, a K–8 Spanish immersion school in the Sacramento City Unified School District. There, the visitors split into four groups and observed activities in multiple classrooms before gathering for a debrief about what they’d learned.
Based on the wealth of information they received, the group has expressed interest in returning on an annual basis. Representatives from the following institutions were involved in the visit:
- Fulbright Taiwan
- National Central University
- National Cheng Kung University
- National Kaohsiung University of Science and Technology
- National Penghu University of Science and Technology
- National Taipei University of Technology (Foundation for International Cooperation in Higher Education of Taiwan)
- National Taiwan University of Science and Technology
- New Taipei City Education Department
- Taipei Municipal Minquan Junior High School