In an attempt to respond to the linguistic and educational needs of newly arrived immigrants to the district, the EL Department operates Newcomer Centers that provide a supportive transitional environment intended to help students acquire communicative English language skills. In these centers, the students are provided with an orientation to the U.S. society and school system, as well as English language support, individualized attention, and a multi-cultural focus on students taking pride in their culture.
The Newcomer Center at the elementary level is team taught with a multicultural classroom approach, and is open to a limited number of children who have attended English Speaking schools for less than one year. This insures that newcomers are not segregated and are provided with English Language models, as two thirds of the class is comprised of native English speaking children. Our Elementary Newcomer Center is located at Beechview Elementary School. Newcomers at the middle and high school levels are exposed to English language models by participating in elective classes in the mainstream, and ideally entering content area classes as they become more capable and equipped to receive general educational instruction. Our Newcomers at the 6th, 7th, and 8th grade levels attend East Middle School, and our High School Newcomer Program is at Harrison High School.