SCSD Students Receive Seal of Biliteracy
Published on 6/6/19
District News Corcoran High School Henninger High School ITC Nottingham High School PSLA @ Fowler
Twenty-one SCSD students will be graduating with the New York State Seal of Biliteracy on their diploma when they cross the stage at graduation in June.
The Seal of Biliteracy was established to recognize high school graduates who have attained a high level of proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages in addition to English. The Seal is meant to appeal to students whose first language is English but who are learning a second language, as well as for English Language Learners who are developing academic proficiency in their home language while mastering English.
In addition to meeting New York State Department of Education requirements for the Seal, the final requirement was a multi-genre project in which students demonstrate their home language proficiency. To do so, students presented a 15-minute PowerPoint presentation to a panel of four judges, speaking about a pre-approved research topic. Interpreters were on hand for students who presented in languages other than English.
Nottingham student Haben Legesse is from Eritrea and his native language is Tigrigna. He presented on the culture and history of Eritrea, including the language, clothing, food, religion and more. He will be attending Syracuse University next year, where he plans to study civil engineering.
“I’m already fluent in Tigrigna, so I decided it would be good to become certified in it,” he explained. “In college, I can say that I have the Seal of Biliteracy, and it will feel like I’ve achieved something.”
Nottingham student Noorulhuda Al-Obaidi is from Iraq and is receiving the Seal for speaking Arabic.
“My family will be proud of me,” she said. She hopes to study pre-med at Syracuse University.
Henninger student Kazi Rafee plans to study computer science in college and is hoping the Seal of Biliteracy will help set him ahead.
“The Seal of Biliteracy shows that I am fluent in more than one language,” he explained. “Hopefully, I can test out of the foreign language requirement in college. I have been writing and speaking this language for 15 years of my life, so the process wasn’t that hard for me!”
SCSD Director of English as a New Language (ENL) Jackie LeRoy said that the Seal of BIliteracy is intended to help prepare students with 21st Century skills, affirm the value of diversity and help students be more competitive in the college application process and in the job market.
“As the world becomes more linguistically and culturally diverse, there is a growing need for citizens who are bilingual or multilingual and culturally proficient,” Ms. LeRoy explained. “The ENL, World Languages and Bilingual Education Office is very proud of the students who worked very hard during this school year to meet the criteria and demonstrated their bilingualism with their presentations. Our hope is that they recognize that being bilingual and/or multilingual is an asset and will benefit them in a future world that is becoming more diverse and multilingual every day!”
Congratulations to these #SCSDCivicReady students on their success:
- Monet Brown, Spanish (Henninger)
- Hector Pizarro, Spanish (Henninger)
- Kazi Rafee, Bengali (Henninger)
- Lori Tran, Vietnamese (Henninger)
- Rahmo Rashid, Somali (Henninger
- Shally Thaw Da, Karen (Henninger)
- Tamara Ayala, Spanish (Nottingham)
- Haben Legesse, Tigrigna (Nottingham)
- Novel Lin, Burmese (Nottingham)
- Emmy Naw, Karen (Nottingham)
- Safa Hussein, Arabic (Nottingham)
- Noorulhuda Al-Obaidi, Arabic (Nottingham)
- Bibek Siwakoti, Nepali (Nottingham)
- Rukanika Rukanika, Kinyarwanda (Corcoran)
- Dawit Gebremichael, Tigrinya (Corcoran)
- John Patrick, Swahili (Corcoran)
- Hassan Musa, Kizigua (Corcoran)
- Lia Marero Diaz, Spanish (PSLA at Fowler)
- Nishal Basnet, Hindi (PSLA at Fowler)
- Shabnam Shams, Dari (PSLA at Fowler)
- Eliza Velazquez, Spanish (ITC)