§ 16-22.2-2. State seal of biliteracy.
(a) A state seal of biliteracy is established to recognize 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. The state seal of biliteracy shall be awarded by the commissioner. School district participation in this program shall be voluntary.
(b) The purposes of the state seal of biliteracy are as follows:
(1) To encourage pupils to study languages;
(2) To certify attainment of biliteracy;
(3) To provide employers with a method of identifying people with language and biliteracy skills;
(4) To provide universities with an additional method to recognize applicants seeking admission;
(5) To prepare pupils with twenty-first century skills;
(6) To recognize the value of foreign language and native language instruction in public schools. For the purpose of this section "foreign language" means any language other than English, including all modern languages, Latin, American sign language, native American languages, and native languages; and
(7) To strengthen intergroup relationships, affirm the value of diversity, and honor the multiple cultures and languages of a community.
(c) The state seal of biliteracy certifies attainment of a high level of proficiency by a graduating high school pupil in one or more languages, in addition to English.
(d) The council on elementary and secondary education shall promulgate such regulations of the commissioner as may be necessary to establish the criteria that students must achieve to earn a state seal of biliteracy, which may include, but shall not be limited to, attainment of units of credit in English language arts and languages other than English; passage of state assessments in English language arts and languages other than English; and passage of such additional assessments of foreign language proficiency as may be approved by the commissioner for this purpose.
(e) The commissioner shall do both of the following:
(1) Prepare and deliver, to participating school districts, an appropriate insignia to be affixed to the diploma and transcript of the pupil indicating that the pupil has been awarded a state seal of biliteracy by the commissioner.
(2) Provide other information they deem necessary for school districts to successfully participate in the program.
(f) A school district that participates in the program under this section shall do both of the following:
(1) Maintain appropriate records in order to identify pupils who have earned a state seal of biliteracy.
(2) Affix the appropriate insignia to the diploma and transcript of each pupil who earns a state seal of biliteracy.
(g) No fee shall be charged to a pupil pursuant to this section.
(P.L. 2016, ch. 97, § 1; P.L. 2016, ch. 111, § 1.)