2018 Conference for Community-Based Heritage Language Schools

SAVE THE DATE - October 13, 2018

The NHLRC-supported conference connects community-based language schools to address common challenges.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Language communities across the United States have well-established schools and programs that teach a wide variety of heritage languages. These programs face similar challenges -- maintaining sustainable funding levels, involving families fully and effectively in the language development enterprise, finding and supporting effective teachers, developing curriculum and materials that engage students and promote learning, and receiving recognition of students’ learning and proficiency from the formal public and private education community.

Our goal, to connect community-based language schools and discuss and address common challenges together, has been the vision of our innovative conferences at American University since we started in 2014.

This year’s conference will bring together language leaders, language advocates, and program administrators involved in community-based language schools, along with language researchers and educators in other bilingual programs, to explore ways to keep addressing these issues together.

The conference will feature presentations by leaders in the field of heritage language education who will share evidence-based practices and lead discussions to help us collaboratively seek effective solutions to common challenges. Panels and workshops will focus on program quality and sustainability, effective instruction, and making connections with national leaders and organizations.

We are thrilled to announce that our opening plenary speaker will be Dr. Maria Carreira, professor of Spanish at  California State University, Long Beach and the Co-director of the National Heritage Language Resource Center at UCLA. She has many publications about heritage language education in the United States and around the world and has co-authored textbooks for Spanish language learning. Her focus is heritage language pedagogy, and she has many ideas for ways to engage students. With her colleagues at UCLA, she has recently created a comprehensive online course for training heritage language teachers. There will be time after her presentation to engage with her.

This conference serves as a powerful venue for building strong partnerships in which community-based language schools work in collaboration with each other and with parents; public, private, and charter school programs; universities; and language organizations to advance the goal of supporting the rich heritage language resources in our country.

Registration will begin in June, 2018.

The conference is organized by the Institute for Innovation in Education in the School of Education and the TESOL Program at American University. It is co-sponsored by the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL), National Heritage Language Resource Center (NHLRC), and American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL).


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