Elementary Dual Language



NISD offers a Dual Lanaguage Immersion Program to students at the following campuses – Shirley J. Howsman, Monroe May, J.B. Passmore,Eduardo Villarreal, Gregorio Esparza and Carl Wanke.  This model is gaining recognition for its positive results in bilingual education, and students are showing early success.  Parents are asked for a six-year commitment to the program. Dual Language is also offered at the following Secondary Middle Schools - Katherine Stinson and Sul Ross.

Partial development funding of the NISD One World, Two Languages - Building Bilingual Communities programs has been provided by Title VII and Foreign Language Assistance Program (FLAP) grants.



Cabinet Approved March 9, 2010

Dual language immersion (DLI) programs provide instruction to language minority and language majority students to develop bilingualism and biliteracy in English and another language.  DLI programs also provide bilingual education for language minority (LEP) students and foreign language immersion education program for language majority (Non-LEP) students.

Dual language immersion programs provide a positive school environment for all students with access to qualified teachers who participate in continuous training and professional development at the beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels in instructional design that promotes academic achievement, bi-literacy and bilingualism.

Classroom Structures / Models
Traditionally elementary campus programs begin at Kindergarten adding a grade level each ensuing year.  6th – 8th grade DLI programs are available at selected middle schools.
Elementary Schools
50/50 Classroom Model

Available at Howsman, Passmore, Villarreal, and Wanke Elementary Schools

50% English learners; 50% native English speakers with at least 30% minority language (LEP) students

50:50 – 50% target language instruction and 50% English instruction at all grade levels

90/10 Classroom Model

Available at Monroe May and  Gregorio Esparza

As the original Northside ISD Dual Language Immersion pilot schools, these schools will remain as 90:10 models.

When a Dual Language Immersion classroom cannot be filled based on the recommended percentages listed above, additional LEP students must be placed in the Dual Language Immersion classroom to complete a 22:1 ratio.  Any additional LEP students enrolling after the 22:1 ratio is reached will need to be enrolled in the Transitional Bilingual Program. 

Middle Schools
Available at Ross and Stinson Middle Schools 2 – 3 subjects will be taught as dual language courses, including social studies, science and Spanish.

Student Eligibility and Criteria 

LEP students regardless of schedule code will be considered for DLI program pending available space.  All other LEP students will receive the State mandated transitional bilingual education program.

Non-LEP students may enter into the DLI program by meeting the proficiency standards set by the following measurements: Pre-LAS, LAS Links, district-developed interview and protocol checklists and assessments.

Students eligible for the dual language program will be accepted in this priority order:


Priority Order for Interested Students on a Space Available Basis

Priority 1—Students that live within the attendance zone
Priority 2—Students with siblings in the program 
Priority 3—Students living within the cluster
Priority 4—Out of cluster students

A lottery will be necessary if the campus principal determines that the number of interested Non-ELL students exceeds the available seats, based on the above priority order.  


Parental Approval 
Parents must provide written approval for all students participating in the program offered by the district.  LEP students must follow the Northside Independent School District parental approval process.  Non-LEP students will utilize the District Dual Language Immersion Program Parental Approval Form.

Expectations for Parents

  • support their children’s linguistic, academic, and socio-cultural development
  • commit to completing the elementary program
  • participate in a minimum of two meetings per year regarding the DLI program
  • promote, advocate, and support the DLI program.
  • encourage use of the second language at home and in the community

Expectations for Students

  • participate in the DLI program in the elementary grades
  • participate in dual language activities during and after school, as available
  • use the second language at home and in the community
  • value multiculturalism
  • maintain high levels of  learning, conduct, and attendance


Transfers and Transportation 
Existing district transportation, cap and cluster and DLI choice transfer policies will be followed.   Students must have been in the NISD Dual Language Immersion Program for at least one grading period in order to be considered for entry into a Dual Language Immersion Program at another school pending space availability.  

Staffing & Staff Development Requirements for Dual Language Program

Elementary teachers must:

  • Hold bilingual/ESL certification 
  • Meet all NCLB highly qualified criteria established by the Department of Human Resources
  • Participate in a minimum of twelve hours of annual training and staff development focused on dual language education

Middle School teachers must:


  • Hold certification in content area to which they are assigned
  • Be screened by the Department of International Languages with a written and oral examination in Spanish
  • Meet all NCLB highly qualified criteria established by the Department of Human Resources
  • Participate in a minimum of twelve hours of annual training and staff development focused on dual language education


The following goals serve as the underlying framework of the Dual Language Immersion Program:

  • the development of fluency and literacy in English and another language with the integration of English speakers, paying special attention to limited English proficient (LEP) students participating in the program
  • the promotion of bilingualism, bi-literacy, cross-cultural awareness, and high academic achievement in an international community
  • the involvement of parents, business and community members in the Dual Language Immersion Program
  • the Dual Language Immersion Program will be offered to students in grades K-8; and consider expansion to high school
  • the Dual Language Immersion Program will address all curriculum requirements specified in Chapter 74, Subchapter A, of Title 19 (relating to Required Curriculum) to include foundation and enrichment areas; and
  • the Dual Language Immersion Program will be staffed with certified teachers able to deliver a high-level of academic instruction in English as a second language and the assigned language of instruction.


Dual Language Education of New MexicoGuiding Principles for Dual Language Education 

The Two-Way Immersion Toolkit 


90/10 Program Design Model

Grade Level
% of Spanish instruction
% of English instruction
***Students learning with a 90/10 dual language program model begin with the majority of their instruction in Spanish. For the Spanish-speaking English Language Learner, this means they are allowed to maintain their native language and develop necessary literacy skills in their first language. For the Native English Speakers, this is essentially a Spanish immersion program. The advantage to both student groups in this program model is that each classroom has both Native English Speakers as models and Native Spanish Speakers as models.

Updated 03/7/2014