State Seal of Biliteracy


In order to affirm the value of bilingualism and encourage our students' enrollment in world language programs, the state of California awards the State Seal of Biliteracy (SSB) to graduating students who have demonstrated biliteracy in English and at least one other language. Graduating seniors within the Modesto City School District who meet the state requirements for biliteracy will earn the State Seal of Biliteracy. Students must meet the current California Department of Education State Seal of Biliteracy requirements.

Eligibility Criteria for a Student Whose Primary Language is English

Each of these three academic requirements shall be fulfilled:

1. Students must have completed all English-language arts (ELA) requirements for graduation with an overall grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 or above in those classes. 

2. Students must have passed the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) in ELA (administered in grade eleven), or any successor test, administered in grade eleven, at or above the “standard met” achievement level, or at the achievement level determined by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI) for any successor test. 

3. Students must demonstrate proficiency in one or more languages other than English through one of the following methods: 

a) Pass a foreign language Advanced Placement (AP) exam, including American Sign Language, with a score of three or higher. 

b) Pass an International Baccalaureate (IB) examination with a score of four or higher. 

c) Successfully complete a four-year high school course of study in a foreign language and attain an overall grade point average of 3.0 or above in that course of study, and demonstrate oral proficiency in the language comparable to that required to pass an AP or IB xamination. 

d) If no AP examination or off-the-shelf language test exists and the district uses its own language examination, the school district must certify to the SSPI that the test meets the rigor of a four-year high school course of study in that foreign language and, at a minimum, assesses speaking, reading, and writing. If a student seeks to qualify for the SSB through a language that is not characterized by listening, speaking, or reading, or for which there is no written system, the student must pass an assessment on the modalities that characterize communication in that language at the proficient level or higher. 

e) If a district offers a language examination in a language in which an AP examination or off-the-shelf examination exists, the district language examination must be approved by the SSPI. 

f) Pass the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) II foreign language exam with a score of 600 or higher.

Eligibility Criteria for a Student Whose Primary Language is not English

If the primary language of a pupil is other than English, the student shall also meet the following academic requirements: 

1. Attain the level demonstrating English language proficiency on the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC), or any successor English language proficiency assessment, in transitional kindergarten or kindergarten through grade twelve, inclusive. 

2. Meet the academic requirements 1, 2, and 3 as stated above in Section I. 

Benefits of Earning the State Seal of Biliteracy

The Seal of Biliteracy recognizes and promotes world language instruction in public schools and encourages students to study world languages. Earning the Seal provides students with a competitive edge as they move on to careers and higher education. In addition, promoting biliteracy in multiple languages honors the cultures and languages of our community and leads to an appreciation of the diversity in our schools.