Bilingual students to receive ‘Seal of Biliteracy’ under proposed bill

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Public school students in Louisiana who show proficiency in a language other than English could be able to get a state “Seal of Biliteracy” on their diplomas, if the Senate agrees to a bill backed by the House in an 86-0 vote Thursday.

The proposal (House Bill 1016) by Rep. Vincent Pierre, D-Lafayette, would encourage local school districts to participate in the program, but wouldn't require it.

Proficiency would be demonstrated if a student: passes an advanced placement exam or other world language test in a second language with a certain score, completes a certain number of high school language courses and achieves a 2.5 grade point average in those classes or passes a foreign government's approved language examination.

The bill heads next to the Senate for debate.

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