Students graduate with certificates of biliteracy

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Leadriane Roby. Courtesy Grand Rapids Public Schools

Forty-one Grand Rapids Public School students will graduate with a Seal of Biliteracy certification.

Grand Rapids Public Schools (GRPS) announced 41 graduating seniors will be awarded Seal of Biliteracy certificates in recognition of their high proficiency in a second language.

“I want to congratulate our 41 scholars for this remarkable achievement,” said Leadriane Roby, superintendent, GRPS. “The amazing work by these GRPS scholars will prepare them with 21st-century skills that will benefit them in the labor market and global society.”

Graduates will receive a gold foil on their diploma to indicate their achievement, as well as a letter from State Superintendent of Education Michael Rice and a letter from the Director of the Office of Educational Excellence Leah Been.

Michigan is one of 36 states awarding high school students with a Seal of Biliteracy. The award was created by the Michigan Department of Education to recognize high school graduates exhibiting language proficiency in English and at least one other world language.

The seal may be awarded to any student receiving a high school diploma or certificate of completion or a high school equivalency certificate. The biliteracy certificate was designed to encourage students to embrace their native and heritage languages through the study of world languages. It also sets recipients apart for employers and schools of higher education when being considered for employment or admission.

This year’s recipients are from eight different schools. Eleven students are graduating from Union High School, and five are from the school’s Newcomers program. Other graduates come from Grand Rapids Learning Center, Ottawa Hills High School, Innovation Central High, C.A. Frost Middle High School, Grand Rapids University Preparatory Academy and Grand Rapids Public Museum High School.

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