Our Story

Bilingual

In honor of National Spanish Language Day, we're highlighting the passionate and dedicated EISD Bilingual Department. The department is comprised of a qualified and diverse spread of employees who were born and raised in different locations.

Ms. Doris Pérez, who's been in the district for 25 years, is a Bilingual Education and ESL Director who comes from the island of enchantment, Puerto Rico. She was also recently named the San Antonio Administrator of the Year. Doris says each team member brings their own cultural expertise to the department and learn from each other every day. "The beauty of the Spanish language is that it's a romance language, you can say the same word or phrase in so many ways," said Doris. "It's interesting because sometimes they will come in and ask me, 'Hey I heard this phrase in Puerto Rican, what does it mean?' We all say different dialects."

Bilingual Education and ESL Specialist, Hugo Hernández, with 16 years of service, is from Mexico. He was just recently elected as the President of the San Antonio Area Association for Bilingual Education (SAAABE). Hugo recognizes the lingual richness in the Edgewood community and points out that the department's main goal is for students to see the importance of maintaining their identity.

"I think a lot of people take for granted how important language is because it's a part of your identity. In this district, we want our kids to maintain the language and feel proud. This community is so rich in culture and we embrace the Spanglish and different languages around, but we also create those opportunities in which we model the proper way because, in the end, the students need to be exposed to the formal language."

Hugo says that even though we might have different expressions, there is one formal language that can be understood across all Spanish-speaking countries and that is where our district translator brings his expertise.

Carlos Molina has been in EISD for 12 years. He comes from Spain and attended the Complutense University of Madrid, which is what some might call the "Harvard University of Spain." He ensures all district documents in Spanish are translated correctly to ensure we send the right message of consistency and is actually one of a few school translators across the state of Texas. "Languages are consequences of the culture. Languge belongs to the culture. There is a Spanish language that holds a common ground in all Latin America."

Since 2008, Edgewood ISD became the first district to utilize the dual-language program models - providing every campus with a dual-language model.

"We want to continue to build upon the framework that we have. The two most important pillars of this framework are our students and our teachers. We are proud of the work that our teachers do, and I believe we prepare our teachers well," said Doris. "We give the best opportunities to our students to get the best results and they have to see the value of becoming not just bilingual but multilingual. When you learn both languages, it opens up the third door and you're now at a competitive advantage once businesses are hiring."

The Bilingual Department also teaches the beauty of the culture as well. The department hosts annual events for campuses to celebrate such as Cinco de Mayo, Diez y Seis de Septiembre and more. Their passion and value for the language are what has kept this team in the district for so long and they can truly say they enjoy being an important resource for the students and community.

"We are passionate about what we do for the students and the community and we believe that we're true advocates for Bilingual Education. With that in mind, we also want people to know that we are Edgewood proud. This is the district to be in today. Once students leave high school, they will be prepared and ready in both writing and reading, their receptive and expressive skills altogether. We want to make sure they reach that high level."

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