Dual Language Programs

Two elementary children in front of a chalk world map on the pavement

Dual language is a type of bilingual program where students learn content (literacy, math, science, and social studies) in two languages. 

The majority of dual language programs in DPS are taught in Spanish and English. The French American School of Denver offers French. Denver Language School offers Mandarin in addition to Spanish.

Most DPS dual language programs start in ECE or kindergarten and extend through 5th grade. DPS continues to expand secondary programs for students who would like to continue dual language programming beyond 5th grade.

Benefits of Dual Language Programs

There are many benefits to being in a dual language program. Students in dual language programs do as well as or better academically than their peers in English-only settings and have the added benefit of learning a second language. Dual language students:

  • Develop strong reading, writing and speaking skills in two languages.

  • Often outperform monolingual peers on standardized assessments of math and English Language Arts.

  • Develop cognitive flexibility and problem-solving skills.

  • Demonstrate greater understanding, appreciation and respect for other cultures and languages.

  • Are prepared for a globalizing world and job market.

Enrolling in a Dual Language Program

The dual language programs in Denver Public Schools are designed to serve all students entering the program in ECE–Grade 1. After first grade, any student wishing to enroll in a dual language program must either have been previously enrolled in a bilingual or dual language program or demonstrate proficiency in Spanish, French (for French American School of Denver), or Mandarin (for Denver Language School).

If your neighborhood school does not offer a dual language program, you may use the School Choice process to apply for a space at another DPS school. For more information on the choice process, visit the Choice & Enrollment website.


Frequently Asked Questions

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