The Dual Immersion Academy (DIA) is open to students countywide and is housed at Rio Real Elementary School. The program’s goal is for students to become bilingual, biliterate and bicultural in English and Spanish.
The dual immersion program started out as a small program for kindergartners in 2006. The following year, the Rio School District expanded the program beyond kindergarten to include students up to fifth grade.
Classes are geared for native English and Spanish speakers, who are taught by experienced bilingual teachers. Kindergarten students receive 90 percent of their instruction in Spanish and 10 percent in English. Increasing amounts of English are added each year until 50 percent is reached in fourth grade and continues in fifth grade. Instruction at every grade level focuses on the state-mandated academic requirements, as well as listening, speaking, reading, writing, the arts and culture in both languages.
DIA’s format is based on proven research methods and in-classroom experience. Studies show that dual immersion programs are beneficial for both English and Spanish speakers.