Twenty-one soon-to-be Huntington High School graduates who speak more than one language are set to earn New York State’s Seal of Biliteracy on their diplomas.
The designation formally attests to the holder’s superior language skills. A Huntington faculty committee consisting of Spanish teacher Lorena Hickey, Italian teacher Natalia Kopshti and French teacher Deidre Mayer worked closely with students interested in earning the state biliteracy seal.
“The New York State Seal of Biliteracy recognizes high school graduates who have attained a high level of proficiency in listening, speaking, reading and writing in one or more languages, in addition to English,” according to the State Education Department. “The intent of it is to encourage the study of languages; identify high school graduates with language and biliteracy skills for employers; provide universities with additional information about applicants seeking admission; prepare students with 21st century skills; recognize the value of foreign and native language instruction in schools; and affirm the value of diversity in a multilingual society.”
The 21 Huntington Class of 2018 members qualifying for the biliteracy seal include: French: Veronique Daniel, Thomas Edgar-McNerney, Aidan McCooey and Lindsay Saginaw; Italian: Katherine Aparicio, Kathryn Giambrone, Casey Moskowitz and Cathryn Ricciardelli; Spanish: Serina Aguirre, David Alfaro Caballero, Joel Alfaro, Mateo Alzate Rodrigo, Wilber Bonilla Alvarado, Benjamin Conner, Dariana Cruz, Gaia D’Anna, Jamie Rosenbauer, Neida Valencia, Erica Vazquez and Matthew Wildermuth. Erick Joya-Amaya earned the seal for literacy in both Spanish and Italian as well as English.
“The honor tells university admissions officers and future employers that graduates have passed tests demonstrating a high level of proficiency in English and in a second language,” said Judy Goris Moroff, the Huntington School District’s director of world languages, dual language and English as a new language.