First dual language academy in Bexar County

Mark Twain Dual Language Academy opens doors August 2017.

Several San Antonio schools participate in a dual language program. The make-up of the class is 50 percent of the students speak Spanish as their first language and the other half speak English.

The students will learn side by side each other’s language, eventually becoming bilingual. The students in the program start out speaking 90 percent Spanish and 10 percent English in the first grade. Eventually as the course progresses students will speak 50 percent of each language.

So, by the 5th grade the students can speak both languages fluently.

"I realized after I kind of managed to speak both you could help a lot of kids,” said Maria Realpe, an 8th grade student in the program. “You could help kids, and you could make friends with them because you could help them translate homework and stuff. It was a pretty cool thing to help."

Now, Mark Twain Dual Academy will become the first school in Bexar County for the entire student body to be involved in the program. For the other schools in the ISD, it’s only a select number of students in the program, but at the academy every student will be included.

The academy will open August 2017 with Pre-K through 2nd grade. The academy plans to eventually expand the program to 8th grade.

Berenice Coronado, who’s apart of the program, teaches 8th grade history at Garner Middle Schools. She said she can see a difference in the students she teaches.

“Middle school is an important part of a teenager when they're just developing and going through that phase, and this has helped them to become more united and to keep together and motivate each other to be successful."

For more information on the program or to apply you can click this link.

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