International Spanish Academies on Full Display

International Spanish Academies on Full Display During Annual Symposium
Posted on 04/27/2021
Student reading a book

On April 15, the School District of Palm Beach County held its fifth annual International Spanish Academy (ISA) symposium in a virtual setting, a first since the event originally began in 2016. The Symposium provides a platform to highlight the skills and talents of students enrolled in dual language programs.

Five District schools have International Spanish Academies; Berkshire Elementary, Greenacres Elementary, John I. Leonard High, New Horizons Elementary, and Okeeheelee Middle.

“Our ISA Symposium is a special collaboration among the International Spanish Academies in Palm Beach County,” said Deborah McNichols, the Principal at Greenacres Elementary. “At our school, we are honored to showcase our campus and our commitment to celebrating cultural diversity, bilingualism, bi-literacy, and academic achievement in all that we do.”

The symposium included student speeches and cultural performances, offering a glimpse into the work done by the students during their years receiving dual language education.

"The beauty of the International Spanish Academies is not only that they focus on the Spanish language but also on their culture,” said Lisa Capra, a Program Planner in the District’s department of Multicultural Education. “The ISA Symposium is an incredible showcase as we celebrate language, culture, diversity, and learning.”

A website was created to centralize information about the schools and host the Symposium videos, which include messages from Superintendent Donald E. Fennoy II, as well as Jesús Fernández, the Education Counselor of Spain in the USA.

Each school’s principal also welcomed visitors to the Symposium with their respective videos. Additionally, every ISA school has its own website with information about its program:

Berkshire Elementary

Greenacres Elementary

John I. Leonard High

New Horizons Elementary

Okeeheelee Middle

“At John I. Leonard High School, we believe in the power of speaking various languages as a way of celebrating cultural diversity and supporting our students' post-secondary goals,” said Melissa Patterson, the school’s Principal.

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