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English Learners

Hawthorn School District 73 is a diverse community economically, culturally and linguistically. There are approximately 63 different languages spoken within our school district. All parents or guardians of newly enrolled students must complete a Home Language Survey to inform school staff of which language their child speaks at home. If a student speaks a language other than English at home, we will administer an assessment to measure the student’s knowledge of English. A student demonstrating the need for support learning English is identified as an English Language Learner and provided with appropriate services. 

Programs and Services

We offer three programs for English Language Learners:

  • Dual Language Programming

  • Transitional Bilingual Education

  • English as a Second Language

 Learn more about the programs below.

Dual Language Programming

The Dual Language Program is a kindergarten through 8th grade program. The K-5 program is located at the Hawthorn School of Dual Language. The Hawthorn School of Dual Language is a two-way Spanish immersion program. The goals of the Hawthorn School of Dual Language are high academic achievement, bilingualism/biliteracy, and the development of cross-cultural understanding.  The Hawthorn Dual Language Program offers daily opportunities for students to interact in their native language with English dominant and Spanish dominant peers, as classes are composed of students with both language backgrounds.  Content area instruction takes place in English and Spanish for all students within the classroom setting.  In the Dual Language Program, students continue to learn bilingually even after English proficiency has been established. This program is offered to English Language Learners and native English speakers. Additional information regarding the Hawthorn School of Dual Language Program can be located here. 



Students that attended the School of Dual Language have the option to continue their dual language education experience at each of our middle schools. The Dual Language Middle School Program consists of a Spanish Language Arts/Literacy Course along with content instruction in Spanish for social studies. This will provide 90 minutes of instruction in Spanish at the middle school level.  This extended program will help dual language students continue their development of both academic and language skills that will transfer to success in the rest of their academic career and lifetime.  Additional information regarding the Middle School Dual Language Program can be located here. 

Middle School Dual Language Program (English) 

Middle School Dual Language Program (Spanish)

Transitional Bilingual Education (TBE)

When there are 20 or more students that speak the same language, the state requires school districts to provide instruction in English and the native language of the students. Currently, the transitional bilingual education program provides reading, writing, and other classes in English and in the student’s home language. Currently, Lincoln School has a designated classroom supporting students in Spanish and English. Additional TBE programs are located within each of our schools. All K-8 schools have a TBE program that serves students to support their language development. This programming is provided on a pull out basis. Each of the TBE programs provide language support in Spanish and English, with the  exception of Townline School. The Townline TBE program supports students in Russian and English. 

Within all the TBE programs, as students’ English improves, they spend more time learning in English and less time learning in their home language. Students leave the program when they are no longer identified as English Language Learners. The goal of this program is to support students' in their home language while they fully transition to English-only instruction.

English as a New Language

The English as a New Language (ENL) program used to be called English as a Second Language (ESL). It provides instruction in English with support in the students’ home language so that they can learn to read, write, and speak English. Students from many different language backgrounds are taught together, and English may be the only common language among them. The goal of the program is to provide instruction in English with support in the student's home language until they become English proficient. All of our schools have an ENL program.