Foreign Language Committee » FLC Meeting Minutes 03.06.18

FLC Meeting Minutes 03.06.18

March 6th, 2018

Foreign Language Meeting Minutes

March 6th, 2018

4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.

In attendance,

Katie Riley, Tatyana Starzhynskaya, Ashley Brasfield, Amy Eoff, Dr. Simone, Meredith Park, Melissa Hurt, Kate Crowder, Jessica Woody

The committee reviewed the following information:

=       Members

=       Purpose and role

=       Current foreign language offerings in the district

=       Offerings in comparable public/private schools; Hume-Fogg, White Station, Williamson County, St. George’s, St. Mary’s, MUS

Before looking through the FLC Survey Feedback, the committee also reviewed parameters in scheduling/staffing by the Tennessee Department of Education:

=       RTI factors/requirements

=       Staffing & Certification Requirements

=       Physical Activity Requirements

The Committee then formed two special interest groups to streamline the feedback, noting budgetary items

=       Elementary

=       Middle and High School

Suggestions for Elementary

=       Agreed the emphasis on exposure over fluency was important to educators

=       Insert Foreign Language (four languages currently taught at the high school) into the LAMPS rotations:

o   Keyboarding/FL (A week)

o   Library/Guidance (B week)

Budgetary Implications:

  • Staff and Materials

Other Considerations:

  • In elementary school, Exceptional Student continuum of services (SPED, APEX, Speech, Physical Therapy, etc.) occur during RTI time—which would exclude several students from foreign language offerings if this is how they were incorporated into the elementary school schedule


=       Fundamental debate—Should middle school students lose the ability to choose electives (i.e. between STEM and foreign language) in favor of mandatory electives that provide a survey of electives offered (World Languages first semester and STEM second semester)?

=       One proposed change would provide 7th graders with a semester of World Languages (French/Spanish/Latin/German) and a semester of STEM.  In 8th grade they would have the choice to take an elective in their area of interest.

Budgetary Implications

=       Quality Staffing would be difficult; would also require several more teachers

=       Materials

Other considerations

  • The ease of book sharing between schools of paper textbooks compared to digital versions was discussed

High School

=       Four languages should remain; French, German, Latin, Spanish

=       Sign Language could be offered through club scheduling or other enrichment activity

=       High School teacher stated that high school foreign language teachers’ desire for students to “think” and reason is more important to the high school curriculum (FL) than developing fluency in middle school.

Next Steps

=       The Director of Academic Advancement stated that she will take these comments, the survey feedback, and the suggestions by the committee to school-level administration at each school along with general education teachers

=       Impact on students at all levels will be examined

=       This process will be ongoing as budgetary implications will be weighed against other needs (such as optimal capacity) across the district

=       An emphasis on encouraging and promoting after school enrichment programs or incorporating cultural exposure into social studies and science lessons continue within our schools.