The History

Dual Language Immersion (DLI) programs have been a part of Texas education since 1973 when former Governor Dolph Briscoe signed into law the Bilingual Education and Training Act, which required bilingual education for students and abolished the English-only teaching requirement imposed in 1918.
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In the summer of 2001, Senate Bill (SB) 467 and Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 50, were unanimously passed by the House and Senate ushering in the first DLI bill in the state of Texas. Although dual language instruction was not prohibited with current laws,this law explicitly focused on the “biliteracy” goals of DLI programs and encouraged school districts to offer these innovative and successful instructional programs for all their students.

In addition, in 2007, Texas unanimously passed SB 1871 which called for disaggregation of achievement data results of Emergent Bilingual students by type of program served, and it further defined DLI programs as one-way and two-way to serve both emergent bilingual students and non-emergent bilingual students

In 2019, the Texas legislature continued their support of DLI and passed House Bill 3 that incorporated the Texas Commission on Public School Finance’s recommendation to create a new DLI program allotment that incentivized school districts to offer these programs, particularly for emergent bilingual students, and the necessary resources to support these programs. HB 3 promotes and supports quality DLI programs in Texas. Texas continues to be a leader in the development and implementation of DLI programs, legislative support for DLI programs, and high-quality implementation of these programs to educate large numbers of emergent bilingual students more effectively.


The Benefits

Dual language immersion programs provide students with an enriched education that is beyond traditional schooling, a differentiated challenging and engaging experience that supports the goals of dual language education: bilingualism and biliteracy development in partner language and English, high academic achievement in all content areas in both languages, increased multiculturalism and high levels of sociocultural competence. DLI programs build on a student’s first language, no matter what the language, to develop deep academic language proficiency, content knowledge and skills, and enhanced cognitive development.

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Dual Language Guidance Committee

In response to the growing research on the benefits of dual language instruction and the state legislature’s support, the Texas Education Agency partnered with experts and practitioners in Texas by forming the Dual Language Guidance Committee in 2021. This group’s goal was to positively impact the academic achievement of emergent bilingual students in Texas by developing a systemic and sustainable Dual Language Immersion Framework.

This group of committed professionals built on the expertise of experts, researchers, and practitioners to create foundational documents: 7 Essential Steps to Start a Dual Language Immersion Framework, Dual Language Success Criteria, Dual Language Implementation Rubric, and Dual Language Checklists for District Administrators, Campus Leaders, and Teachers. These tools not only provide a description of exemplary dual language programs, but the guidelines and tools to build one. Each document is broken down into the most important aspects of dual language instruction and implementation.

Dual Language Immersion Resources

This framework comes with key tools. These should be used to clarify how to make a dual language program exemplary. Directions on how to use each tool are below.


Dual Language Success Criteria

The Dual Language Immersion Success Criteria provides a measurement system to assess your current state and identify the highest priority areas for improvement.


Dual Language Success Criteria

The Dual Language Immersion Rubric provides holistic descriptions of DLI programs at different stages of development: established, exceeds, and, exemplary. Use this tool internally to diagnose your current state and the next stage of implementation.


Dual Language Success Criteria

The Dual Language Immersion Checklists provide detailed actions for each group of DLI leaders: district, campus, and teachers. These provide clear actions for each role.