Program Background

  • In February of 2013, the district concluded a survey of more than 1,300 staff and constituents to determine support for expanding current instructional programs. At the time:

    • Spanish Immersion was the third most popular response for program addition,
    • 62% said Bethel School District should offer an immersion program at the elementary level,
    • About 62% indicated they preferred Spanish to be the language of choice,
    • 58% said they would enroll a student if the program was available
    • 60% indicated they would support the multi-year family commitment required for successful participation in an immersion program, and
    • Aside from Spanish, 13% of respondents indicated an interest in Mandarin (Chinese). Roughly 9% suggested other world languages such as Japanese, French, Russian, German, Korean, Dutch, Italian and ASL (sign language).

    Prior to and since completion of this survey, district staff, administration and the school board have been researching elementary world language/immersion programs, conducting observations in other school districts and planning for implementation