The Transitional Bilingual program services students who are learning English as their second language. When enrolling in Vashon School District, parents are asked to identify their student’s first language and also the predominant language spoken in the home. Students who have a language other than English as their first language are given the Washington Language Proficiency Test (WLPT) to determine the level of their English skill. The WLPT is given in the fall of each school year, or at the time a new student transfer into our district. A student’s performance on this test will determine their eligibility for services from the Bilingual teacher. Students are again tested on the WLPT in the spring. The score on this second test will determine whether they will need further services the following year.
State funding through OSPI grant application supports the bilingual program. The amount of funding is based on the number of bilingual students scoring in the “eligible for service” range on WLPT and can be adjusted during the year.
Students with the greatest need for English instruction are served by a pull-out model and given individual or small group direct instruction in English. The amount of time and number of sessions per week are based on the students need. The bilingual instructor also provides consultation and in-service training for general education teachers with bilingual students in their classrooms.
VISD offers a peer tutoring program. High School and middle students who have some knowledge of Spanish are trained to work with bilingual students from Chautauqua Elementary School. Interpreting, document translation, and parent advocacy and support services are also available.