TPS offers a literacy program for students

TULSA, Okla. – As National Hispanic Heritage Month draws to a close, 2 News highlights a Tulsa Public Schools program that encourages students to earn a certificate to be able to speak, read and write in two or more languages.

The Seal of Biliteracy program is in its fifth year at TPS. In its early days, the district was the first in Oklahoma to offer this.

Since the 2018-2019 school year, 248 students have obtained the Biliteracy Seal. Students earn the seal when they show proficiency in speaking, reading, and writing in English
and in another language.

Jasmine Aburto is a senior at McLain High School. She applied for the biliteracy seal in English and Spanish. It’s something she’s been looking forward to since her freshman year.

“It will allow me to show people, like academics, my work that I have enough command of both languages,” says Aburto. “So if I work in a company I can have more clients and if I’m going to teach I can help more students.

A student can apply for several languages. They will take tests for the chosen language later in the year. For English, the district uses tests like the ACT and SAT.

When a student completes the program, they receive a medallion, certificate and sticker.

TPS has awarded this seal to students in more than 14 different languages, including less common languages ​​like Pashto and Zome. The district is always open to adding additional languages, as a student asked TPS to add Finnish this year.

The deadline for Tulsa high school students to apply for the biliteracy seal is October 23.

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