LA 5.2: Worksheet - Program Model Summary 2


For a program to be accurately labeled a bilingual program, it must (1) use students’ primary language (usually the language used in the home), (2) teach content area subjects through both the primary and target languages, and (3) teach the target language (in the United States that is English).

Student Population

Relationship to School

Exposure to English Speakers

The students speak the same primary language—usually a language other than English. They may be immigrant or indigenous minorities. Since these programs provide instruction in English in addition to the students’ home language, about half of the instruction is in English. Models for English include their teachers, other students learning English with them, and interaction in the school.

Teacher Population

The teacher in this program must be proficient in both languages.


Instructional Costs

These programs require a bilingual teacher and materials in both languages. It is one of the less expensive models because the curriculum delivered is mainstream curriculum with additional materials. It works best in districts which have substantial numbers of language minority students speaking the same language at the same grade level.

Program Length

Early exit programs transition students to English-only instruction after initial literacy is developed in the home language. Late exit programs last through elementary with instruction in L1 and L2.

Linguistic Emphasis

(L1=primary language, L2=English)

Theories of Language Learning

Native Language Support

This program is based on the principle of transfer (cognitive/academic or literacy-related skills transfer across languages and L1 development supports L2). Content area instruction may be provided almost exclusively in L1 with gradual increase in the use of English as the medium. In Late exit, students receive 40% of the content in L1 even after they are reclassified as fluent English proficient.

Academic Emphasis

Content and Language

Teachers use content to teach language and language to teach content.

Sociocultural Emphasis

C1=1st Culture

C2=2nd Culture

Based on a pluralistic view of language and culture; however, programs may undercut C1 if L1 is not valued and maintained.

Cognitive Emphasis

The basic concept of this program (transfer) supports cognitive development, particularly the development of higher order thinking skills.

% of Achievement Gap Closed by End of Schooling

(based on data-analytic research)

More than 50% of the language gap is closed. The final average scores will be between the 32nd to above the 50th percentile.