English as a Second or Other Language (ESOL)
We believe international and multilingual students bring our school division the capacity to advance 21st century learning for all students by giving them opportunities to communicate across language and culture, to connect with a global community and economy, and to contribute to the development of a rich tapestry of cultural diversity that is the civic, social, and economic foundation of our region and country.
Our international and linguistically diverse students succeed in one of the most rigorous high school programs in our schools: They meet and exceed Virginia’s graduation requirements while simultaneously becoming fluent in a foreign language and adjusting to a new culture. Our bilingual and bicultural graduates are poised to become transformative leaders in the community and the world. Over the last six years, former and current students in Albemarle County’s high school ESOL program have consistently graduated at higher rates than their state peers. The gap in graduation rates between all ACPS students and those who participated in the high school ESOL program has decreased during this time.
These results are due to programs like the immersion excursion summer program for high school ESOL students that earned $20,000 from local grants and engaged students in experiential, project-based learning. They are due to the hard work of our teachers and the incredible potential of our students. In addition to these successes, the ESOL program faces challenges in ameliorating opportunity gaps as evidenced by content-based assessments. The program will build on its success in language development and programming in high school to improve these persistent inequities.