Foreign Language for Everybody

Students taking introductory foreign language classes no longer need to fulfill prerequisites


Leisa Komyo

Students work diligently on their foreign language homework even during these unprecedented times.

Starting next school year, students who would like to take introductory foreign language classes such as Spanish 1 and Chinese 1 no longer need to fulfill any prerequisites. 

“The decision to remove some prerequisites was a team decision with the world language team. In accordance with the new framework that was released by the state on how world languages should be taught and who world language classes should be available to,”Assistant Principal Angela Pimentel said.

Students who want to take a foreign language no longer need to receive a C grade in middle school math and English.

By creating a prerequisite based on an unrelated subject, we were automatically excluding students who are capable of acquiring a second language,” Spanish teacher Nichole LaPeer said.  “The world language department and our assistant principal all agreed that this did not make sense, and that we would like the prerequisite removed.”

This decision will most likely increase the number of students in foreign language classes as students will be further encouraged to sign up for a foreign language.

“Teachers in our department are pretty excited about this,” Chinese teacher Joy Chao said. “We certainly want to see more students sign up for our classes.”

The new policy might help graduation rates rise as foreign language classes help fulfill graduation requirements. It will also help students in their lives after high school as well. Not only would foreign language help students expand their knowledge, but it could also help them in terms of their resume.

By completing the fourth level or higher of a language at Woodbridge [High], students will obtain the California Seal of Biliteracy, which will help them when they apply for college or a job,” LaPeer said. “We hope that more students will have a better opportunity to earn the seal.”

With this policy going to be put in place next year, Woodbridge High will be able to observe the effects of the new policy.

“I don’t think it would affect the students in a negative way; this should encourage more students to take the language class,” Chao said.