The Office of World Languages aims to provide all learners with standards-based, proficiency-oriented, and engaging World Language curriculum, which focuses on developing effective communication in at least one world language other than English as well as cultural competence to help all our students become better-equipped global citizens. Our curriculum is aligned to the World Language Readiness Standards for Learning Languages, which is based on the 5 Cs: Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities to equip our students both linguistically and culturally to compete globally. The focus in language education in the 21st Century is no longer on grammar, memorization, and learning from notes, but instead using language and cultural knowledge as a means to communicate and connect to others around the globe. DPS currently offers five languages: Spanish, French, Chinese, Japanese, and American Sign Language to meet the needs of more than 7,000 elementary, middle and high school students.
Our curriculum meets the World Language graduation requirement as directed by the Michigan Merit Curriculum. Beginning with the graduating class of 2016, all students must have completed two credits of a world language other than English before graduation, or demonstrate a two-year equivalent proficiency at the Novice High level on the American Council of the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Scale. Students at Novice-High Level are expected to use the language communicatively in highly predictable situations when interacting with native speakers in a variety of contexts. To be placed in higher language courses, students will need to demonstrate that they have met the pre-requisitives of language proficiency established for each language course via the presentation of the official transcript from schooling in a country where the language that they claim proficiency is spoken or via district-wide language proficiency exams.
Michigan Academic Standards for World Languages