Nearly 100 Hollister High School graduating seniors earned the State Seal of Biliteracy in 2023.
Hollister grads celebrate earning State Seal of Biliteracy
October 2, 2023
Nearly 100 Hollister High School graduating seniors from the Class of 2023 earned the State Seal of Biliteracy, demonstrating that they attained proficiency in English and at least one other language: either Spanish, French or American Sign Language. This is the 11th year the school has awarded the seal. Over the prior five years, 592 HHS students have attained the Seal of Biliteracy.
English Learner Program Specialist JoAnne Kaplansky said awarding of the state seal “promotes multilingualism as an asset. We want to encourage our students to study another language and culture because being multilingual opens up opportunities not just for employment, but also opportunities to connect with and understand other cultures.”
Of this year’s awardees, more than half (56 percent) are former English learners, who began school classified as such because their home language was not English. They had to demonstrate proficiency in English based on California state criteria to reclassify before being eligible to apply for the State Seal of Biliteracy.
Senior Viktor A. Rodriguez, who is the only graduate receiving designation as fluent in Spanish and French, along with English, called his receipt of the State Seal of Biliteracy “a milestone. Learning a new language, and subsequently culture, is not a one-and-done achievement; it’s something you carry with you for the rest of your life; something you’re able to carry with you wherever you may go.”
He said learning new languages and about other cultures “only helps bring the world closer together, and opens many doors in one’s professional career.” He plans to continue his multilingual path throughout college “by diving deeper into my current languages and/or maybe even learning another.”