State Seal of Biliteracy

Why is the State Seal of Biliteracy established?The State Seal of Biliteracy is established to recognize high school graduates who have attained a high level ofproficiency in speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages in addition to English. The State Seal of Biliteracy shall be awarded by the Superintendent. School district participation in this program is voluntary.What is the intent of the bill?(a) It is the intent of the Legislature to encourage excellence for all pupils, and the Legislature wishes to publicly recognize pupils for exemplary achievements in academic studies.(b) The study of world languages in elementary and secondary schools should be encouraged because it contributes to a pupil’s cognitive development and to our national economy and security.(c) Proficiency in multiple languages is critical in enabling California to participate effectively in a global political, social, and economic context, and in expanding trade with other countries.(d) The demand for employees to be fluent in more than one language is increasing both in California and throughout the world.(e) The benefits to employers in having staff fluent in more than one language are clear: access to an expanded market, allowing business owners to better serve their customers’ needs, and the sparking of new marketing ideas that better target a particular audience and open a channel of communication with customers.(f) It is the intent of the Legislature to promote linguistic proficiency and cultural literacy in one or more languages in addition to English and to provide recognition of the attainment of those needed and important skills through the establishment of the State Seal of Biliteracy. A State Seal of Biliteracy would be affixed on the high school diplomas or transcripts of graduating pupils attaining proficiency in one or more languages in addition to English.What is the value of the State Seal of Biliteracy?:

  • To provide employers with a method of identifying people with language and biliteracy skills.
  • To provide universities with a method to recognize and give academic credit to applicants seeking admission.
  • To prepare pupils with 21st century skills.
  • To recognize and promote foreign language instruction in public schools.
  • To strengthen intergroup relationships, affirm the value of diversity, and honor the multiple cultures and languages of a community.

What do you do to participate?A school district that participates in the program under this article shall do both of the following:(a) Maintain appropriate records in order to identify pupils who have earned a State Seal of Biliteracy.(b) Affix the appropriate insignia to the diploma or transcript of each pupil who earns a State Seal of Biliteracy.51464. It is the intent of the Legislature that no fee be charged to a pupil pursuant to this article.Participating school districts would be required to maintain records in order to identify pupils who have earned a State Seal of Biliteracy and to affix an appropriate insignia to the diploma or transcript of pupils who earn a State Seal of Biliteracy.