student receiving award

The Marshalltown Community School District (MCSD) is proud to announce 64 members of the Marshalltown High School (MHS) Class of 2024 have earned the Iowa Department of Education’s Seal of Biliteracy.

To earn the seal, a high school student must achieve proficiency on a state English assessment and establish proficiency in another world language assessment. The seal encourages students to pursue biliteracy, recognizes the value of language diversity, prepares high school graduates for a 21st-century world and workplace, and takes an asset-based view of language diversity, cultures, and heritage.

Being biliterate is different from being bilingual. Bilinguals can speak and understand oral discourse in two or more languages. Biliteracy requires balanced language proficiency across all domains of listening, reading, writing, and speaking.

The number of students who have received the Seal of Biliteracy this year has increased from last year, with all of this year's students demonstrating proficiency in Spanish.

“Earning the seal reaps academic and social benefits,” said English Learner and Migrant Program Coordinator Rachel Inks. “The seal assists colleges and universities in identifying and awarding credit for the attainment of high-level skills for all applicants. The seal strengthens intergroup relationships among our diverse student body. The seal acknowledges and reinforces the value of English learners’ home language and cultures and, in turn, encourages English learners to develop proficiency in English.”

“It is exciting to see our numbers of high school students achieving the Seal of Biliteracy growing each year,” said Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte. “These students are positioning themselves with a competitive advantage when it comes to future career and life opportunities.”

Seniors receiving the Seal of Biliteracy will be recognized at Senior Awards Night on Thursday, May 23 and will be wearing a medal during the MHS commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 26.