LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - The Lufkin ISD School Board and the president of the State Board of Education went back to elementary school Tuesday, and leaders said Burley Primary School isn't your typical kindergarten.
Tuesday's visit from President Donna Bahorich was just one stop in her tour of a total of nine schools, across Texas. However, Bahorich said this day was definitely one to remember.
"What I saw was intensive instruction in both languages, so that you do achieve that true bi-literacy for all students," Bahorich said.
Bahorich's presence at Burley also brought up the topic of a senate bill, passed in May, that allows elementary-level, dual language participation to count toward high school credits.
"I think it's a terrific opportunity," Bahorich said. "It's an additional opportunity, and it recognizes the value and the benefit of these dual language programs."
Betsy Mijares, the principal of Burley Primary, said that she thinks the program offers more than opportunity.
"To be bilingual and into those things in the medical field or surgeons," Mijares said. "It's just more marketable and it gives them an opportunity to grow in the career, they make more money. And, opportunity for scholarships as well. It gives them a better background."
The dual language program has shown years of success, starting 25 years ago, said LISD Superintendent LaTonya Goffney.
"I know a lot of colleagues are implementing these programs now because they see the necessity of it," Goffney said. "But, the fact that their was a visionary leadership even then, to implement a program just makes the manifestation of what we have now even greater."