The Language Opportunity Coalition was founded in 2014 to bring together diverse organizations in Massachusetts to increase language learning opportunities for learning English, native, heritage, and world languages, and to ensure that all learners have equal access to a high quality education and professional opportunities.
From 2014 to 2018, the Coalition coordinated the Massachusetts Seal of Biliteracy Pilot Project. The Pilot Project began as we awaited approval of the State Seal of Biliteracy by the state legislature. When planning for the project began in 2014, only 9 other states had approved State Seal of Biliteracy legislation. The Coalition successfully advocated for passage of the LOOK Act with the Seal of Biliteracy in November 2017, and Massachusetts became the 29th state to establish a State Seal of Biliteracy.
The award criteria for the Pilot Project is based on the national standards established in 2015 Guidelines for implementing the Seal of Biliteracy, published by four national professional associations for language instructors (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, National Association for Bilingual Education, National Council of State Supervisors for Languages, & TESOL International Association), plus consideration of policies in other states and resources on the national SealofBiliteracy.org website.
Development of the award implementation process and Coalition’s Seal of Biliteracy TOOLKIT during the Pilot Project was a collaborative process, involving educators in ESL, Dual Language, Bilingual, and World Language programs in school districts across Massachusetts. The award program was approved in school districts and one university on a local basis.
- Developed criteria for the award, based on national guidelines, and began planning for implementation on the local level.
- Established a workgroup of 50 educators to help districts and schools begin the pilot.
- Developed the Seal of Biliteracy TOOLKIT outlining award criteria for the pilot and sharing resources for implementation.
- 10 schools/districts gave over 300 awards.
- TOOLKIT revised with input from the field on the first year of the pilot.
- 17 schools/districts gave over 900 awards.
- TOOLKIT revised with input from the field on the second year of the pilot.
- 26 schools/districts gave 1,339 awards
- In the final year of the pilot, after passage of the LOOK Act, the workgroup had grown to almost 150 educators from 100 school districts.
- View report…
LOC Steering Committee
Massachusetts Foreign Language Association
Multistate Association for Bilingual Education – Northeast
Massachusetts Association of Teachers of Speakers of Other Languages