SBJHS Dual Language Immersion Program


Santa Barbara Unified School District’s Dual Language Immersion (DLI) Program integrates native speakers of Spanish and native speakers of English in the same classrooms and teaches them in both languages. The program includes a balanced number of native English-speaking, native Spanish-speaking, and bilingual students. At the elementary level, pre-K through first grade students receive 90% of instruction in Spanish and 10% in English. Over their elementary years, there is a gradual increase of English instruction until 5th grade, when 50% of the day is spent in each language.

Grade Language of Instruction
TK-1 90% Spanish / 10% English
2 80% Spanish / 20% English
3 70% Spanish / 30% English
4 60% Spanish / 40% English
5 & 6 50% in Spanish & English
7 & 8 33% Spanish / 67% English

What will Santa Barbara Junior High’s DLI program look like?

At Santa Barbara Junior High, 7th-grade students will be enrolled in Spanish Language Arts and one additional content course in Spanish, while their other four courses will be taught in English. In 8th grade, students will continue this pattern, taking SLA and an additional content course in Spanish. The goal is that all students will graduate high school fully bilingual and biliterate, achieve academically at grade-level, exhibit strong sociocultural competence and also receive the Seal of Biliteracy.

Who can participate in Santa Barbara Junior High’s DLI program?

The Dual Language Immersion program at SBJH is open to all students who participated in a DLI elementary program. However in order to maintain the model, every effort will be made to create a linguistic balance between native speakers of Spanish, bilingual students and native speakers of English.

Students entering 7th grade who apply to SBJH’s DLI program and do not currently attend a local DLI program or are new to U.S. Schools must take the Spanish Language Placement Exam. Testing is typically offered in the Winter of the student’s 6th grade year.

To inquire about taking the Spanish Language Proficiency Exam or for additional program questions, please contact the office of English Learner and Parent Engagement Programs at 805.963.4338 ext. 6232