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Popular immersion program in Fremont, CA moves in to middle school

January 3, 2016

Parents in Fremont have been pushing  for several years now to insure that their program continues through junior high school. I’ve had the pleasure of visiting the school and speaking with parents there and I know how hard they’ve been working on this. Thankfully, their school district has agreed. Congrats to Fremont!

You can read the district’s full statement here. The important points are these:

  • The Board accepted CIPCF’s recommendation to include two core Mandarin classes for all immersion students from day 1, rather than starting with only one core class in the first year (provided there are a minimum of 15 students for the class).
  • Provide an optional 7th period as either a 0 period (proposed) or 7 period (board member suggestion) to immersion students so they can still take an elective class like other students.
  • The staff recommended Hopkins Junior High in the Mission San Jose attendance area to host the programs.
  • Spanish Immersion Program Jr. High starts in fall 2016 and Mandarin in fall 2017– all current Mandarin students will have the opportunity to continue to Junior High.

It’s great news that the students will have the possibility of an additional period so they can take an elective class. In many programs, including San Francisco’s Aptos Middle School, Mandarin is students’ elective, so they can’t take band or theater or other electives that their non-immersion peers are able to.

From the San Jose Mercury News:

Spanish and Mandarin immersion classes to be offered in Fremont junior high schools

Spanish and Mandarin immersion programs will be rolled out to junior high schools over the next three years, the Fremont Unified School District’s Board of Education has decided.

The school board voted unanimously Oct. 28 to expand the popular immersion programs that currently are taught at elementary schools.

At that meeting, parents extolled the benefits of extending dual immersion to junior high schools.

Some parents said they’d like to see the Spanish immersion program made more challenging and asked that the district do a better job of communicating the program’s expectations and goals.

One Fremont student addressed the board in Chinese as board Trustee Yang Shao translated.

Please read more here.

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