Bethel Schools to launch new academic program

Spanish Dual Language Immersion begins this fall at Thompson Elementary

Starting next fall, Chester H. Thompson Elementary in the Bethel School District will offer Spanish Dual Language Immersion. This will be academically challenging and enriching program targeted on developing student bilingual and biliterate proficiency in Spanish and English.

As the district’s first immersion program, the school is seeking both native Spanish and English speaking students. Enrollment in the program will be limited to kindergarten this year, with additional grades added in the years to come.

At kindergarten and first grade, approximately 90% of instruction will be in Spanish and 10% will be in English to facilitate early Spanish language acquisition and literacy development. As students transition to higher grades, more of the instruction will shift to English. By fifth grade, there will be an equal division, a 50/50 split of Spanish and English content.

Families are invited to learn more about the program’s design, philosophy, and how to enroll at a series of parent nights. English speaking families should plan to attend either February 19 or March 12.  The meeting for Spanish speaking families is March 5.  All meetings are from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the school. This program is open to all students.  Attendance at one of these parent nights is required for the admissions process.

To learn more, call 253.683.5800. The application deadline is March 23. For more details, visit

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