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Huntington Beach Union High School District

Westminster High School Announces Vietnamese Dual Language Immersion Program in Collaboration with Westminster School District, the First Preschool Through 12th-Grade Program in the Nation

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. - Westminster High School (WHS) is excited to announce the beginning of their Vietnamese Dual Language Immersion (VDLI) program, in partnership with Westminster School District (WSD), which will become the first preschool through 12th-grade VDLI program in the nation.

The VDLI program integrates native Vietnamese-speaking and English-speaking students in the same classroom and provides academic instruction in both languages. This program begins at the preschool level at DeMille Elementary School, transitioning into middle school at Warner, and will now continue for the first time into high school at WHS, creating a seamless pathway for students to develop bilingual skills, cultural understanding, and high-level academic achievement.

The VDLI pathway at WHS is the newest addition to the Vietnamese Language Program. The Vietnamese Dual Language Immersion Program provides students with bilingual instruction opportunities to enhance their language skills for future academic and career success on a global scale. In addition, students in the VDLI pathway will have access to various cultural and academic enrichment activities on campus, including the Tết Fair, Vietnamese American Culture Club (VACC), field trips, and community engagements. These opportunities are set to grow and diversify in the coming years.

WHS Vietnamese Language teacher Thảo Ly Nguyễn, who played a monumental role in piloting the VDLI program expressed, “I am very blessed, for I love what I do: teaching the Vietnamese language and culture to the young generation. This VDLI Pathway at WHS would not be possible without the tremendous contributions from the parents and educators from Westminster School District, HBUHSD, and our Lion Family”. Additionally, the Vietnamese team at WHS shared, “It is an honor and privilege to be able to carry on their work and support the first VDLI cohort.”

The inaugural VDLI celebration on March 20 marked the official welcome of the new cohort to WHS.

WHS Principal Amy Sabol beamed with excitement during the celebration. When addressing incoming students and their families in attendance, she exclaimed, “Today we celebrate the incredible dedication and determination shown by many individuals to ensure our students, families, staff, and community continue to strengthen the cultural ties that enrich our beautiful campus. It is an honor to support the exceptional opportunities that have been developed in collaboration with Westminster School District and Huntington Beach Unified School District. I am confident that our students will flourish within the VDLI program and continue to make meaningful contributions within our community for generations to come.”

As the 2024-2025 school year commences, students will have the opportunity to engage in college preparatory, academic placement, and MERITS (math, science, technology, and art) courses tailored to their interests. Moreover, they will be enrolled in cohort VDLI classes designed to emphasize college readiness and foster cultural competence in leadership roles. This milestone event signifies a commitment to providing students with a well-rounded educational experience that prepares them for future success in academia and beyond.