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Biliteracy Summit Reflects on Current Practices

The Department of Multilingual Learner Programs convened a Biliteracy Summit on November 4 to reflect on current practices and align the needed supports for our teachers, students, families, and administration. This work would not be possible without the principals’ ongoing commitment to the goals of the program: bilingualism and biliteracy, high academic achievement, and socio-cultural competence.

Our journey to provide emergent bilingual students with equitable and rigorous learning opportunities continues this year. Thus, we are taking big steps in reaching our goals for biliteracy instruction, according to Pedro Mendia-Landa, director of multilingual learner programs. These are some of the highlights:

  • We have expanded the biliteracy programs in some of the schools and will continue to do so until our students have access to biliteracy programs in kindergarten through fifth grade.
  • We are implementing the “side-by-side” model in our one-way dual language programs, giving teachers the opportunity to teach a content area in two consecutive grades.
  • We are integrating content literacy and language using our newly adopted program Panoramas.

 To support the expansion of programming, we are welcoming 15 new teachers into our biliteracy team working as classroom or ESSER teachers. 


Pictured from left to right: Multilingual Instructional Coach Katarzyna Kwolek; Patty Gantenbein, assistant principal at Clinton Avenue School; Luis Menacho, principal at John S. Martinez; Tina Mitchell, principal at John C. Daniels; Carroll Ryan, biliteracy instructional coach; Nicole Brown, assistant principal at Hill Central; Pedro Mendia-Landa; Monica Morales, principal at Fair Haven; Kathleen Mattern, principal at Truman; Dr. Paul Whyte, assistant superintendent for instructional leadership; Ivelise Velazquez, assistant superintendent for curriculum, instruction, and assessment; Rosalyn Díaz-Ortiz, multilingual learner programs supervisor; Lynn Brantley, ELA supervisor; Keisha Redd-Hannans, assistant superintendent for instructional leadership; Marisol Rodríguez, principal at FAME.