Katy ISD Board of Trustees and Superintendent Alton Frailey
United States of America

Katy ISD has before it an incredible “win-win” opportunity presented through expansion of its Two-Way Immersion program:

*** Program overview ***

1. TWI has been cited as being “among the most impressive forms of education available in the United States.” Students who participate in these programs gain grade-level academic ability, well-developed language and literacy skills in two languages, and cross-cultural competence.
2. It is the most effective model for language acquisition.
3. In KISD’s current program, English and Spanish are being learned by native Spanish-speakers and native English-speakers.
4. Students are taught the same subject matter as non-participants. TWI students follow TEKS as all students in Texas do. The primary focus is content mastery regardless of the language of instruction.
5. The only difference in secondary is that they undertake a language class and a subject class (ex: science, math, history, etc.) in the second language; so TWI is comprised of only two classes in the second language in secondary.

*** Need for TWI in secondary ***

6. One of the non-negotiables of dual language schooling is a K-12 commitment of the school district.
7. Secondary immersion education is crucial to maintain skills gained at the elementary level and promote continued development of students’ communication and academic proficiency in both languages.

*** Demand for dual-language programs increasing ***

8. TWI programs are becoming an increasingly attractive option for schools and districts that are looking for ways to strengthen and develop the language resources of all of their students.
9. This is the type of education that readies students from all backgrounds to become competitive in a global marketplace.
10. Throughout the U.S., districts are seeing the value of educating their students to be multilingual, including Houston, Alief, Spring Branch, Conroe and Clear Creek ISDs.
11. TWI enhances the district’s program offerings and helps keep the district competitive with other top school districts.
12. KISD currently offers TWI on a limited basis, but it is definitely not because there is little demand - quite the opposite. More community interest exists in the program than opportunity. Although the program is hardly advertised, there is a long waiting list for acceptance into the program.

*** TWI benefits and successes ***

13. Although the program is only open to a select few, it can be and should be offered district-wide. Why?
Districts nationwide are offering this program to many, if not all, of their students
due to the tremendous benefits it provides them in terms of acquiring:
* bilingualism and bi-literacy
* improved cognitive development
* improved standardized test scores
* improved post-secondary readiness
14. In Katy, TWI can help our district:
* continue to close achievement gaps
* not only meet but surpass TEA's Performance Targets
* support new House Bill 5 requirements
* offer junior high students the opportunity to earn high school credit, and 12th
graders the opportunity to graduate with a college minor in Spanish
* meet the needs of its growing community
15. KISD’s TWI program has demonstrated success by many measures, including
* an independent study
* administration reports
* student performance
* garnering parent support
* garnering corporate support
16. KISD TWI students are....
* performing at or above the level of their peers not in the program
* and, in many cases, they are outperforming non-participants on the state-
mandated STAAR and on classroom grades
* All this while....
-- strengthening their cognitive abilities
-- establishing a foundation to becoming bilingual, bi-literate and bicultural
-- all assets proven to be highly sought-after in today’s global marketplace

In summary, KISD is poised to build upon its current TWI success. The community supports it. Business backs it, and our students need it for continued success in school, college and career.

We, the undersigned, call on the Katy (Tx) ISD board members and Superintendent Alton Frailey, to commit to continuing the success of the district’s Two-Way Immersion (TWI) program by:

1. expanding TWI into secondary, beginning with the 2014-2015 school year. The TWI program’s first 5th-grade class is set to graduate elementary school June 5, 2014;

2. exploring opportunities to expand the elementary program to additional campuses so that more students are able to participate;

3. exploring the opportunities to offer additional languages of study at both the elementary and secondary levels.

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The Support Two-Way Immersion (TWI) in Katy ISD petition to Katy ISD Board of Trustees and Superintendent Alton Frailey was written by Katy TWIst and is in the category Education at GoPetition.