A Case Study of a Dual Language School: Principal and Teacher Perspectives
The purpose of this qualitative case study is to investigate the characteristics of a sustained dual language campus as well as the contributions made by the schools building principal. The exploration of the principals driving emphasis in the school may give insight into how to continue to sustain a progressive dual language program, and the understandings a principal must have when leading a dual language school.
In-depth interviews were conducted to collect data from various teachers of at least five years of experience at the dual language campus as well as the building principal of said campus. A total of six teachers and one principal were interviewed once individually, then the teachers were broken into two focus groups of three members. The questions for the interviews were framed under a culturally relevant pedagogy model, then the responses were analyzed to form a new model of sustainability.
The results of this study indicate that building principals must critically reflect on some cultural aspects of the school, specifically: a reflection of cultural consciousness, a belief that dual language education is an equitable practice, and advocacy for students and high achievement are necessary. Leaders of dual language campus' must validate the student's cultural wealth; this includes their role in the school, community, home and how language plays an important role in the functioning of the sustainability. Finally, principals should understand that the process of reflection and re-evaluation is constant and should continue as such.