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First dual-language Head Start program coming to Jefferson County


ARVADA, Colo. — Londis Ramirez grew up speaking both English and Spanish and knows the value of being bilingual. When she became the education supervisor of the Head Start program in Arvada, she saw a growing need in the community for bilingual education.

“I knew that we had a local neighborhood elementary school that had a dual language program, so that’s when I started asking questions,” Ramirez said.

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In August, Ramirez will welcome students to Jefferson County Head Start’s first dual-language program for 3 and 4-year-olds.

“It’s a gift to really be bilingual and for a school to offer it for free. It’s so amazing,” Ramirez said.

Families who qualify for Head Start can enroll in the program. Classes will be conducted half in Spanish, half in English.

Rosie Estrella will be the lead teacher for the class. She’s been a bilingual teacher at Head Start for 20 years.

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“We pretty much set up the environment to be both English and Spanish. We labeled the toys in both, pictures for the kids, and we’ll have a multicultural board in our class with their families, their traditions, their cultures,” Estrella said.

Olga Boco enrolled her daughter in Head Start when she moved to Colorado from Peru. Her daughter can now speak both English and Spanish. Boco is also now certified to teach in a bilingual classroom. Head Start is helping more parents get certified and provide them with job opportunities.

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Families who qualify for Head Start can enroll in the program. It will begin in August. The hope is to expand and eventually include both native English and Spanish speakers, learning both languages.

First dual-language Head Start program coming to Jefferson County


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