Some kindergarten students learning in two languages in new Guilford schools program

Hunter Elementary kindergartner Ja’Lynn Fitzhugh offered a wide smile, but not the “hola!” teacher Maria Camila Archila was looking for in response to her own greeting.

So Archila went around the table with the small group she’d pulled on a recent Tuesday, saying “hola” and easily getting “hola” in return from the Hispanic students she greeted. Then she came back to Ja’Lynn, who was just beginning to learn Spanish.

“Hola!” Ja’Lynn responded this time. Hunter is one of two sites in Guilford County Schools that introduced new dual-language classrooms for kindergartners this academic year. At Hunter, students in the program learn Spanish and English. Allen Jay Elementary in High Point has dual-language programs in Spanish and English, and English and Urdu, the official language of Pakistan, and also the first-language of many students at that school.

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