Global Village Academy Opens
Charter school students to tackle core subjects – in another language
PARKER - There’s a new school in the Douglas County School District with big plans to prepare students for an increasingly interdependent global world.
Global Village Academy (GVA), a K-8 school, held its ribbon cutting for its new facility in Parker on Saturday. This is the fifth GVA facility in Colorado, with other locations in Aurora, Fort Collins, Colorado Springs, and Northglenn.
At GVA, students learn core content and a second language through English and language immersion instruction for at least one-half of the school day. Students have their choice of Spanish, French, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, or German. Students are not only learning the languages, they are learning the content of their math or science classes in their second target language taught by teachers from around the globe—creating a truly immersive experience.
“We are trying to prepare our kids for the reality of the world that is coming,” said Lance Howard, principal at the new GVA school. “The schooling that our kids receive now is very different than the schooling we had as kids, or our parents had as kids. We are looking forward to the reality of days ahead.”
Demand for workers who can understand other cultures and communicate with people in other languages is expected to continue to grow as the job market becomes more globally interdependent. Yet, currently, only 1 in 5 people in the U.S. speak two or more languages.
“There are now more second language English speakers than there are native English speakers in the world,” Howard pointed out. “This ties into how our school is trying to give our students the international ability to communicate beyond themselves.”
There is the traditional mix of students attending GVA, including some utilizing free or reduced lunch programs, as well as special education students. However, there is also a significant representation of English Language Learners. Parents from other countries that speak another language at home would like their kids to learn about their culture so it is not lost.
With a strong turnout at Saturday’s ribbon cutting, Howard is looking forward to this inaugural year for the school.
“It’s exciting to have everyone come together and have a real sense of community established. We’re already establishing strong relationships in the District and I’m looking forward to seeing how we can continue to develop our learning model.”