Language Immersion in Urban Public Schools: Exploring the benefits and challenges

Thursday December 4th, 2014 at 6pm

Great Hall of MLK Library, 901 G Street NW

Co-hosted by DC Public LibraryDC State Board of Education and DC Language Immersion Project

Sponsored by Ward 5 Council on EducationWard 2 Education NetworkWard 7 Education CouncilWard 4 Education Alliance, Ward 8 Education Council, Ward 1 Education Collaborative, Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization (CHPSPO)Education Town Hall

Moderated by Kavitha Cardoza


Welcome by Richard Reyes-Gavilan, Executive Director of DC Public Libraries (TBC)

Remarks by Mark Jones, President of DC State Board of Education Screening of clip from documentary “Speaking in tongues”

Marty Abbott, Executive Director at American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) – What research shows about the benefits of education in a Language Immersion context

Delores Millhouse and Gina Bowler of My Bilingual Child – How a grassroots community organization successfully advocated for the creation of three additional Language Immersion schools in Prince Georges County

Maquita Alexander, Head of School at Washington Yu Ying PCS – Implementation and timing issues in new Language Immersion programs

Donna Sothern, Spanish immersion teacher at Cleveland Elementary DCPS – Effects of bilingual education on classroom dynamics and learning

Lynn Fulton-Archer, Education Specialist, World Language Immersion, Delaware Department of Education – Implementation of the Governor’s World Language Expansion Initiative – Language Immersion as a turnaround tool

Sally Schwartz, Founder and Executive Director at Globalize DC – The missing link between DC jobs and the jobs of our children


Visit Ms. Arranz’s virtual immersion classroom before and after the panel discussion! Ms. Arranz will be available before and after the panel discussion to answer your questions on how a Language Immersion classroom is different from a regular classroom, how Language Immersion is an accelerated program as opposed to remedial, and addressing common parents’ anxieties relating to Language Immersion.

Click here to register to attend this free event through eventbrite.

The event will be live streamed by DCPL on a google hangout.  Click here to RSVP.

This panel discussion is intended to inform parents, educators, administrators, and community from all eight wards on the benefits and challenges of implementing Language Immersion programs in our public elementary schools. The hope is that a coalition of stakeholders across the traditional public and charter sectors will engage in drafting a strategic plan for expanding Language Immersion offerings in DC.

For additional information please email

Follow us on twitter @DCImmersion

Dear Families, educators, and partners,

In 2020 we announced that the DC Language Immersion Project would close its doors due to lack of resources. However, before completely dissolving the organization, we recently asked a group of local and national educators if they - individually or collectively - would be interested in continuing the work of advocating for multilingual education in the District of Columbia. We are pleased to announce that a few individuals responded yes and volunteered to forge a plan to continue this vital work.

So, we are not closing our doors but we are entering a six-to-twelve-month period of dormancy as we determine the best path forward for the DC Immersion Project.  Thank you for your continued support and please stay tuned for updates.

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