State Seal of Biliteracy

Burlington Public Schools recognizes students’ language achievement with the State Seal of Biliteracy Program

Since the fall of 2019, Burlington Public Schools joined a national group to test the effectiveness of education towards proficiency in two or more languages through the Seal of Biliteracy program. The State Seal of Biliteracy is an award provided by state approved districts given in recognition of students who have attained proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in two or more languages by the time they reach high school graduation. Additionally, the program acknowledges the value of bilingualism and encourages students to pursue biliteracy in English and another language. Most importantly, the State Seal of Biliteracy highlights the evidence of skills that are attractive to future employers and college admissions offices. Recipients of the award receive an insignia on their diploma and transcript upon graduation from Burlington High School. 

There are two versions of the State Seal of Biliteracy, each with different eligibility criteria.

The Official State SEAL of Biliteracy
SEAL Title and Standardized Assessment Criteria for English and Partner Language


State SEAL of Biliteracy with Distinction
In order to receive the State SEAL of Biliteracy with Distinction, a student will need a score of Advanced on the grade 10 ELA MCAS and a proficiency score of Advanced-Low based on the ACTFL Rubric (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) in a partner language. Burlington uses the STAMP (STAndards-based Measurement of Proficiency) test to determine competency in the partner language.


State SEAL of Biliteracy
In order to receive the State SEAL of Biliteracy, a student will need a score of Proficient on the grade 10 ELA MCAS and a proficiency score of Intermediate-High based on the ACTFL Rubric (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) in a partner language. Burlington uses the STAMP (STAndards-based Measurement of Proficiency) test to determine competency in the partner language.

Families are encouraged to educate their students from a young age about biliteracy development. Many children begin their curiosity of languages at a young age. It is beneficial to foster that curiosity and to provide opportunities for children to study languages early in life and continue that study outside of school. 

Burlington High School offers the study of French, Italian, Latin, and Spanish. However, many BHS students gain proficiency in other languages that are taught to them by their parents, cultural affiliations, or religious schools. . Those languages include, but are not limited to, Luganda, Bengali, Japanese, Mandarin, Hebrew, Arabic, Portuguese, German, Hindi, etc. In the spring of 2020, 29 graduating seniors received the Seal of Biliteracy Award. Of those 29 students, 17 students were awarded the Seal of Biliteracy with Distinction.