• Bilingual Education & World Languages 


    Bilingual Education & World Languages 

    The following programs and services are offered in the Rochester City School District and coordinated by the Bilingual Education and World Language Department.  

    Programs & Services 

    • Bilingual Education –Dual Language Models & Transitional Bilingual Education Models  

    • English as a New Language 

    • World Languages 

    • Home Language Support 

    • Latino Studies 

    • Interpretation & Translation Services 

    • Parent & Family Engagement  

    • Commissioners’ Regulation (CR) Part 154 Compliance Systems, Auditing, & Reporting 


    Key Messages from the Department of Bilingual Education & World Languages 

    • Engage students in rigorous and relevant grade-level work through the use of high-quality curricular materials and instruction. 
    • Adopt a translanguaging (dynamic bilingualism) stance as a culturally responsive method of developing language and literacy skills in multiple languages and dialects.  
    • Facilitate language acceleration through focused development of oracy and metalinguistic awareness. 

    Our Commitment to Multilingual Learners  



    The Rochester City School District serves multilingual learners that speak over sixty languages and are from various ethnic backgrounds. Our multilingual students may be: 

    • Born in the United States 

    • Immigrants 

    • Refugees 

    • Unaccompanied Minors (small population) 

    • Students with Interrupted Formal Education 

    • Heritage Speakers (not ELLs, but Culturally and Linguistically Diverse – CALD) 

    • World Language students (inclusive of first, second, & multiple languages) 

    • English speaking Dual Language participants 


    All RCSD educators embrace all multilingual learners as emergent bilingual students. We affirm their cultural and linguistic diversity as an essential practice of a high-quality education. We commit to culturally responsive academic and social practices that support graduating each Multilingual Learner as a productive member of a democratic and global society.  


    Stance on Educating Multilingual Learners 

    Language & Literacy Development Approach 

    We believe in students employing their full linguistic repertoire to develop language and literacy skills in their home and new language. Through our RCSD Language and Literacy Development Approach (LLDA), we design instruction that 

    1. Embraces and leverages students’ funds of knowledge 

    2. Develops student autonomy 

    3. Creates opportunities to engage in discipline specific practices and build content knowledge while acquiring language 


    The RCSD LLDA approach requires alignment to the Instructional Learning Framework, Hallmarks of Advanced Literacy and Scaffolding of Language and Content Standards.  

    Culturally Responsive & Integrated Spaces 

    Grounded in the NYSED Culturally Responsive Sustaining Framework, we believe in the creation of culturally responsive spaces where students see themselves in the children and adults with whom they attend school. Culturally responsive spaces are not only places where we see the students’ cultures represented, but also places where students feel their culture is represented and embraced. It is marked by the everyday anti-racist practices of leaders, teachers, and students.  


    In accordance with Lau v. Nichols, students have the right to be integrated with students from diverse backgrounds, including native English Speakers. English Language Learners benefit from authentic interaction with native English Speakers both linguistically and culturally. These interactions prepare students for a global community and economy. Conversely, we believe that monolingual students and staff benefit from the richness in language and culture of our diverse Rochester community. We uplift culturally responsive, yet integrated spaces for our Multilingual Learners.  


    RCSD Guiding Principles 


    Every child deserves to engage with grade-level content every day. 


    Our students must engage in high-quality culturally responsive experiences where they are affirmed, seen, and valued. 


    We have an obligation to provide an equitable experience to every student in the district that is not dependent on where they live or where they go to school. 



  • Bilingual Education Programs For Spanish-Speaking ELLs

    • Transitional Bilingual Education Programs
    • One-Way Dual Language Programs
    • Two-Way Dual Language Programs


    Each one of the programs above includes an English as a New Language (ENL) program component.

  • English as a New Language (ENL) Program

    • Integrated ENL instruction
    • Stand alone instruction with no more than two contiguous grade levels
    • Two years of support services for former ELLs
    • Starting 2017-18 school year: Additional Home Language Supports
  • Students with Interrupted/Inconsistent Formal Education (SIFE)/ Newcomer program at RIA, SOAR at East, Joseph C. Wilson Commencement, & Edison Career and Technology HS. 

  • Eighty different languages are spoken in the RCSD.

    The percentage of ELLs within the total RCSD student population continues to rise. This trend is expected to continue in the next few years. (Data taken from NYSED and SPA for the last two years)