Pan American Academy Charter School implements a 50:50 dual language program. Approximately fifty percent of students’ courses are conducted in English, the other fifty percent in Spanish. Our one-way language immersion program is comprised predominantly of native English speakers. Our goal is to graduate bilingual and bi-literate students who can read, write and speak proficiently in English and Spanish.
We first opened our doors in 2008 as a K-4 school with our kindergarteners as the pioneers of our Dual Language Program. Since that time, we have grown to be a K-8 institution, implementing the Dual Language Program school wide. In the 2016-2017 school year, those kindergarteners became our first bilingual graduating class.
Identifying, hiring and developing knowledgeable teachers committed to our unique vision has contributed to the success of our program. Whether delivering instruction in English or Spanish, each team member is a language teacher with the goal of promoting bi-literacy and instilling value in both as equal languages. We prioritize the education of our teachers on subject matter as well as best practices in curriculum and technology, instructional strategies and assessment. Teachers are encouraged to reflect on their practice and are supported in using those reflections to improve future instruction.
If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.Nelson Mandela
Developing relationships with various partners such as The Children’s Literacy Initiative, Scholastic, Inc., and American Reading Company ensure that both our teachers and our students have access to great literature as well as leveled books to promote reading comprehension in both languages.
Our assessment is consistent and systematic and is aligned to PA Core Standards. We use multiple forms of assessment including standardized tests and formative assessment tools to monitor progress toward our goal of graduating bi-literate students. We review and interpret assessment outcomes and share findings with teachers and students. Those findings inform the focus and frequency of professional development to enable teachers to develop targeted instructional strategies.