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Statement of Philosophy

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At FIS, we strongly believe that language acquisition is a lifelong process and, as such, all students are language learners and all teachers in our community are language teachers.

  • Our teachers strive to recognize and cater their curriculum to the language needs of all students.

  • Proficiency earned in one language is transferable to other languages, and language proficiency aids the student in acquiring competencies in other curricular areas.

  • Language is an expression of culture and must be valued as an integral part of a student’s identity.

  • The development of the mother-tongue language is critical for maintaining one’s cultural identity.

  • Language learning promotes internationalism and multicultural understanding and underpins our identity as an international school.

  • FIS encourages students to have a growth mindset toward language acquisition.  Every student can learn and grow.  Our linguistic abilities are not fixed.

Admission Process

Our admission process is aimed at giving us insight into what language support would be needed to ensure that your child would be successful, if enrolled, at FIS.

All prospective families will fill out a Language Survey identifying which languages are spoken and to what proficiency. Depending on the linguistic background, the student may be required to take the WIDA Model Assessment, determining their language abilities in the four language domains (Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening). The results would be an integral component in determining the degree of support needed.

Language Support Services

The following services are available for students needing additional language support.

Elementary

Elementary students who are recognized as needing additional language support may receive the following:

  • Small group ELL instruction

  • Co-taught instruction in the homeroom

  • One to one individual support (when needed)

Secondary

Secondary students who are recognized as needing additional language support may receive the following:

  • Academic English Language Development classes (6th-10th)

  • Small group sheltered content instruction (6th-10th)

  • Co-taught content classes (6th-10th)

  • ELL Elective Class (9th and 10th)

Exiting ELL Support Services

In order to monitor student growth and progress in language development, students  are assessed using the WIDA Model test two times per year. Students who achieve an average domain score of 5.5 (Bridging) or above and who demonstrate a body of evidence supporting their grade-level English proficiency will be moved to a “monitored” status for one year. Students will be officially be exited after their monitored year if they continue to maintain and expand their proficiency.