Sign onto the statement by the Language Opportunity Coalition about the State Seal of Biliteracy for Class of 2022.
- Read the full statement & sign on here
- Sign on with your name, district/organization and job title.
- If you can, submit data on the students affected in your district (estimate are OK):
- Approximately how many students in your district would like to earn the Seal of Biliteracy but do not meet the 10th Grade ELA MCAS criteria due to the pandemic?
- Approximately how many of the total students are English Learners, Former English Learners or Heritage Language speakers?
Urgent Action Needed: State Seal of Biliteracy for Class of 2022
We, the undersigned, are educators implementing and supporting the Massachusetts State Seal of Biliteracy in our school districts. We request urgent action to change the Massachusetts State Seal of Biliteracy criteria for English language proficiency so that graduating seniors in the class of 2022 have the opportunity to earn the award. The criteria is based on the 10th grade ELA MCAS exam, which was cancelled in the spring of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, depriving students in the Class of 2022 the opportunity to earn the award.
The State Seal of Biliteracy is a popular and growing award program in Massachusetts that recognizes graduating seniors who attain a high functional and academic level of proficiency in English and in another language (a World Language). In 2020, 1,790 students from 97 schools were awarded the State Seal of Biliteracy, including 69 English learners receiving recognition for their heritage language.
The opportunity to earn the State Seal of Biliteracy is especially important now since institutions of higher education in Massachusetts have begun to grant 6-12 college credits for prior learning to students who received the award in high school. If students in the class of 2022 are prevented from earning the State Seal of Biliteracy, they will not have the option to earn college credit.