Alberta's first internationally accredited Spanish high school program to start this fall in Calgary

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

William Aberhart High School in Calgary, Canada.

Interesting: it'll take place at the high school I went to for a year, William Aberhart High School.

Like other Calgary and Edmonton school boards, the CBE is already part of a partnership between the governments of Alberta and Spain to offer International Spanish Academies.

Next fall, CBE plans to open Alberta's first internationally accredited Spanish high school program at William Aberhart High School.

"This program has exploded. The interest in Calgary around Spanish language learning is enormous," said the CBE's international language consultant, Elaine Schmidt.

"It's really exciting because it is the first big build out of a bilingual program at the high school level after French Immersion, which has been around for a long time."

A bit of info on the program can be found here at the Calgary Board of Education's website.

It's part of a network sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Culture of Spain:

The program is part of the International Spanish Academy network sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Culture of Spain.

Does that mean that they pronounce words like ciudad for example as thiudath?

The page also has a list of reasons for why Spanish:

  • Expands the intellect
  • Teaches responsible citizenship
  • Develops enhanced feelings of self-esteem and pride in having acquired an additional language
  • Strengthens English literacy skills
  • Encourages the joy of lifelong learning
  • Promotes exploration, understanding and appreciation of the cultures of the Spanish-speaking world and contributes to multilingualism and multiculturalism
  • Allows students to compete internationally
  • Provides students with more choices for advanced education and career options
  • Broadens students' cultural life through access to literature, art, music and theatre in another language
Those are some pretty bland reasons though: note that you could use the exact same reasons for just about any other language: try replacing Spanish with French and you have a list of reasons to learn French as well. I would have at least included a number of reasons regarding the role of Spanish in the United States and future projections of the extent of the language. One could also note the situation in countries strongly affected by Spanish, such as how Trinidad and Tobago are aspiring to become Spanish-speaking by 2020:
The growing importance of Spanish is apparent in other parts of South America. Trinidad and Tobago declared in 2005 that it aspired to become a Spanish-speaking country by 2020, setting a target of having at least 30% of public employees to be proficient within 5 years. Ironically, Trinidad and Tobago has been a popular study destination for Venezuelans learning English, but the language trade may now reverse with a shortage of qualified Spanish teachers on the islands.
That alone is twice the reason to learn Spanish than the "teaches responsible citizenship" above, whatever that means.


  © Blogger templates Newspaper by 2008

Back to TOP