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More States Offering Diploma Seals for Biliteracy

More States Offering Diploma Seals for Biliteracy

Last week, Indiana passed a bill that will make it in the ninth state to offer a seal on its high school diplomas for students who "attained a high level of proficiency in one or more languages in addition to English, according to a recent post on the nprEd blog.

Since California first adopted the seal in 2011, many more states are coming on board to recognize the difficulty in learning a second language.

"Beyond shedding a more positive light on bilingualism, proponents say the seal allows employers to distinguish between people who can get by in another language from those who are truly fluent," the article said.

And based on early studies, employers do care about this distinction. In 2014, UCLA professor Patricia Gándara "surveyed 289 California employers, and found that they overwhelmingly prefer hiring a multilingual person. And, they said, they would favor someone with a certification that proves it."

As for the numbers, "[n]ationwide, a record number of Americans speak a second language, according to the Pew Research Center. And that's not just because 62 percent of Hispanics are bilingual: Spanish and Chinese are the most-spoken language among non-Latinos in the country."

More and more states are likely to join Indiana in recognizing language achievement, as nine more states are in the process of developing and passing similar legislation to offer bilingual diploma seals.

Read the full article here and comment below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

4/23/2015

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