Origins of the Seal of Biliteracy

Curious about the history and origins of the Seal of Biliteracy? This podcast describes the development of the Seal of Biliteracy in California and how the initiative spread across the country (including Massachusetts).

America the Bilingual Podcast – Episode 15: Sealed con un Beso

Seal-of-Biliteracy-LogoHe was rich, persuasive — and wrong. But Ron Unz succeeded in leading our most populous state down a dark path in the history of language education. Fortunately, his very success planted the seeds of change that are yielding a harvest of good in the nation today. Hear the origin story of the Seal of Biliteracy, which began in California and is now transforming America.

Something new in America: honoring bilingualism

The Seal of Biliteracy is a seal that high school seniors can earn on their diplomas and transcripts after demonstrating written and oral proficiency in English plus another language. In the five years since its creation in California, the Seal of Biliteracy has been adopted by a majority of US states.

The organization behind the innovation is Californians Together. Says Executive Director Shelly Spiegel-Coleman, “This is a not-very-labor-intensive reform movement that has captured the imagination and spread in a way that other education reform initiatives have not.”

Source: America the Bilingual: Episode 15: Sealed con un Beso

Hear the Story: Listen on iTunes by clicking here: America the Bilingual by Steve Leveen on iTunes or on SoundCloud here.

America the Bilingual is a storytelling podcast for people who think bilingualism is good for themselves, for their families, and for their country.  It is part of the Lead with Languages campaign of ACTFL — The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.