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Laws and Regulations

Iowa Code 281.12.5 Educational Standards describe the world language program requirements, excerpted below:

5. In grades nine through twelve, a unit of credit consists of a course or equivalent related components or partial units taught throughout the academic year. The minimum program to be offered and taught for grades nine through twelve is:
World language (four units). The world language program shall be a four-unit sequence of uninterrupted study in at least one language, which may include American Sign Language. World language instruction shall include listening comprehension appropriate to the level of instruction; rateable oral proficiency; reading comprehension appropriate to the level of instruction; writing proficiency appropriate to the level of instruction; and cultural awareness. All high schools shall offer and teach the first two units of the sequence. The third and fourth units must be offered. However, the department of education may, on an annual basis, waive the third and fourth unit requirements upon the request of the board. The board must document that a licensed/certificated teacher was employed and assigned a schedule that would have allowed students to enroll, that the class was properly scheduled, that students were aware of the course offerings, and that no students enrolled.

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World Languages Teaching Endorsements

In Iowa, teacher licensure is handled by the Iowa Board of Educational Examiners. For the requirements for teaching endorsements in world languages, use the following links:

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Iowa Seal of Biliteracy

The Iowa Seal of Biliteracy is an award given by a district to recognize students who have attained proficiency in two or more languages, one of which is English, by high school graduation.

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Iowa World Language Association

The Iowa World Language Association (IWLA) is devoted to advancing the worldwide mission of education and world languages, literature, and culture by:

  • Promoting the study of world languages and cultures
  • Promoting language curricula, from primary to post-secondary levels, to enable students to become proficient in the target language
  • Opening the doors for multilingual interaction with other cultures

To this end, IWLA provides opportunities and support for language teacher education by:

  • Facilitating the implementation of the National Standards in Foreign Language Education through the 5 C's: Communication, Culture, Connection, Comparison, and Communities
  • Creating opportunities and finding resources for practicing teachers to update their skills and improve their teaching
  • Encouraging the use of new teaching methodologies and technologies in language education
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