Pasco, Prosser schools earn state award

Tri-City HeraldMarch 19, 2014 

Three Mid-Columbia schools are among the first recipients of a state award recognizing efforts helping students who are English language learners.

Pasco’s Maya Angelou and Rowena Chess elementary schools and Prosser’s Whitstran Elementary School were among 42 schools to receive the English Language Acquisition Award, a release said.

The Washington State Board of Education created the award at its recent meeting. The state has tens of thousands of students who are English language learners, about 9 percent of all students, and the board wanted to honor those working to help those students succeed.

Nearly 20 percent of Angelou’s students are transitional bilingual, according to state records, and almost three out of four Chess students are English language learners. More than half of Whitstran’s students are do not speak English as a first language.

“Language acquisition is an indicator of school success and deserves to be acknowledged,” said board Chairwoman Kristina Mayer. “We want to shine the light on what is working so it can be replicated across the state.”

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