The ACTFL Board of Directors with leadership of the National Association of District Supervisors of Foreign Languages (NADSFL) and the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL) released a position statement on May 20th to describe how four major initiatives in education in the U.S. today connect with language learning.
The position statement outlines how standards-based language learning does the following: develops literacy and numeracy, prepares learners in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) areas, engages learners through practical applications for special purposes and strengthens college and career readiness. Language learning meets real world needs and develops these 21st century skills into benefits that are essential for and are within reach of all learners.
An early start to learning a second language, programs of immersion or dual language immersion, and long learning sequences show strong results in helping all learners achieve these benefits (skills?). An increasing number of states are setting up processes to verify second language competency (whether learned through classroom experiences or not) and provide academic credit.
View the entire position statement at http://www.actfl.org/news/position-statements/languages-core-component-education-all-students