LAKESIDE, Calif. (KGTV) - A couple dozen of the seniors getting ready to graduate from El Capitan High School in June are not only wrapping up their high school careers, but a lifetime of unique cultural and language studies.
The Grossmont Union High School District partners with Lakeside Union School District elementary schools in a program called the Global Language and Leadership Program, which teaches children Spanish and Mandarin starting in Kindergarten, resulting in bilingual and trilingual high school graduates.
Since they were children, the students in this program have taken every single subject in either Mandarin or Spanish, resulting in a full immersion into the language.
They also have taken trips to countries that speak those languages as a way to not only learn the vocabulary, but also embrace the culture.
“Aside from knowing the other language, being able to have something called global competency where you not only learn about different cultures but you learn how people function around the world,” said Mya Ramirez, a trilingual 2021 graduate heading to LSU for college.
Students finishing the 13-year-long program said it was difficult at times to juggle the various subjects in different languages, but they’re thankful they stuck with it.
“It kind of broadens your perspective. It makes you think about different cultures, different perspectives and it makes you think in a different way and I think that different way is really important for the way our world right now,” said Hafeez Merali, a trilingual senior packing up to move to England and study at Oxford.
The program is free for any student who wants to join. More information can be found here.