BUSD: Dual Immersion
2121 Moraga Dr.
Santa Rosa, CA 95404-6114
The BUSD Dual Immersion Program will follow what is called the 90-10 model. This means that in kindergarten 90% of instruction will be in Spanish and the remaining 10% will be in English. Each year an additional 10% of the curriculum will be taught in English bringing the percentages to 50/50 by 5th grade. This model was selected as it is the most supported by research and ensures the students are getting sufficient access to the language that is less accessible in society beyond the school.
For students to be successful in this model it is essential that they start in a dual immersion program. For this reason the BUSD dual immersion program will begin next year in Kindergarten and Transitional Kindergarten only. Grades will be added one per year until the program runs K-6. After grade 6 students will have the opportunity to continue in Dual Immersion through partnership programs.
Principal: Carol Castro
I am a native Californian and have been an educator for 27 years. I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Social Science, Master’s Degree in Special Education, CA Single Subject Credential, Learning Handicapped, Resource Specialist, CLAD and Administrative credentials.
I am Bi-lingual and Bi-cultural and excited to be working with our diverse population in our new bilingual program. I support the faculty at the BUSD: Dual Immersion Program in utilizing best teaching practices in bilingual language development, critical thinking, technology integration and collaborative learning to ensure that all students are encouraged and supported to develop and reach their academic goals. I am dedicated to maintaining a school climate and culture that fosters continuous support for both student and teacher growth. I believe the best school culture can be achieved through bicultural awareness and respect for and understanding of the backgrounds of all individuals.
TK Teacher: Mia Peterson
My name is Mia Peterson and I am excited to join the dual immersion program for the upcoming school year. I have enjoyed teaching in Sonoma County for the past eighteen years. I have experience teaching all grades pre-kindergarten through the fifth grade.
I have a life-long interest in multiculturalism, and have experienced life as a second language learner in both Germany and Switzerland. Later, when earning my teaching credential, I focused on language and Academic Development and earned a crosscultural (CLAD) designation.
As a classroom teacher, I have sought to help Spanish speaking students succeed in the educational system both through language support and my work with Spanish-speaking parents.
For the past ten years I have worked at an International Baccalaureate school with curriculum focusing on cultural diversity and global citizenship. The sum of my teaching experience has led me to value a multicultural and multilingual experience for all students. I believe that a dual immersion program provides the richest educational experience possible for the students.
K Teacher: Patricia Gómez
My name is Patricia Gómez and I can’t wait to be a part of the new dual immersion team! I graduated with my multiple subject teaching credential from Sonoma State University in Spring 2016. I feel honored and thrilled to begin my teaching career in a program as valuable as this one.
I grew up in Sonoma County attending schools in Petaluma and Santa Rosa. I was even a student of Bellevue District at one point. I have worked in local public schools for 5 years. I started when I joined California Mini-Corps which is a program aimed at college students with a migrant background who are interested in teaching. I gained experience tutoring migrant students and English learners in grades K-6. I went on to graduate from Sonoma State with a degree in Liberal Studies and was accepted into their multiple subject teaching credential program the following semester.
While completing my teaching credential, I had the amazing opportunity to student teach in another dual immersion school in Sonoma County. I taught kindergarten and fourth grade in both English and Spanish. It was through this experience that I discovered my desire to teach in dual immersion.
I grew up speaking Spanish at home and English at school like so many of our students today. As a future teacher I thought, wouldn’t it be wonderful if that separation didn’t exist? What if we could teach and learn in an environment that acknowledges and values bilingualism and biculturalism? This is why I am so excited to meet all of our new students and families. I know that together we’ll foster a love of language and a global perspective.
K Teacher: Jennifer Duarte
It gives me joy to join the dual immersion team for the upcoming school year. I have been teaching for eight years and prior to that have had jobs working with children and the community. I grew up in Ventura County of southern California. After obtaining my B.A. degree, I volunteered for a year in Guatemala as a librarian at an educational non profit called Safe Passage that helps students who live in poverty to continue their education. After returning, I obtained my CLAD credential, Master’s degree in Education, and taught my first two years in Los Angeles County. In Chicago and Windsor, I held bilingual teaching and administrative positions for diverse communities, including in bilingual and English as a second language programs. This year my husband, two-year-old daughter and I have moved back to California, settling in Santa Rosa, a place that I often visited as a child. We are a bilingual and bicultural family.
It is a wonderful thing that the students will be prepared with rich language development starting at a young age and I am very glad to be a part of it. This year will be full of valuable memories and colorful experiences!
K Teacher: Kelley Valadez
Saludos! My name is Kelley Valadez, and I am very pleased to be a part of the new dual-immersion program in the Bellevue district for the upcoming school year, 2016-17. I have been an educator for a decade now, having had experiences teaching in Europe, California, and Mexico.
I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, but for the last 6.5 years called Guadalajara, Mexico home. I am very excited to be back in California with my husband and almost two-year-old son, and to get to know beautiful Sonoma County better.
While I was in Mexico, I worked in education in a variety of settings- teaching, administration, counseling, and as director of a language school. I am grateful for the experience I have gained working in a different culture in bilingual settings, and believe that the model for language-learning we will be implementing in the dual-immersion program yields the best results for students to become completely bilingual.
I have personally experienced the opportunities and rich experiences that being bilingual can bring, and am excited to be a part of this program, to see students grow effective in using two languages. I look forward to a great year!