Belief Statement & Goals
In teaching foreign languages St. Pius X extends the ministry of the Catholic Church by preparing students to communicate successfully in a global society that requires both linguistic competence and cultural awareness.
- St. Pius X meets The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages’ (ACTFL) standards for Foreign Language Education.
- Communication: Students acquire communicative proficiency (listening, speaking, reading and writing) whether the communication takes place face to face or across centuries through the reading of literature.
- Cultures: Students gain insight into the thought patterns and the social institutions of others through a study of the cultural contexts in which the language occurs.
- Connections: Students use their knowledge of a foreign language to enrich their study of other disciplines.
- Comparisons: Students develop insight into the nature of language by comparing their own language to the language being studied.
- Community: Students acquire a means for connecting with international communities and engaging in outreach opportunities.
Course Progression Charts
The course progression charts shown here are for the 2014-2015 school year. Course progression charts are subject to change from year to year as the curriculum changes.
Graduation & College Requirements
What is the graduation requirement for Foreign Language?
- All public schools in Georgia require 3 years of foreign language (or 2 years + 1 year of fine arts/computer tech) for graduation.
- St. Pius X requires two years of foreign language for graduation and recommends that students take 3.
Why should students take 3 years of a foreign language?
- A third year of foreign language is considered a “course of rigor” by the GA Hope Scholarship. In order to be awarded the Hope Scholarship, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA and take at least 3 courses from the State’s approved list of "Courses of Rigor."
- Many colleges recommend a 3rd year of foreign language for admission.
To see if your prospective schools recommend a third year of language, visit the following site: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/
- Type the college name in the search bar.
- Click "Applying" on the left hand side of the page.
- Click "Academics and GPA" in the middle of the page and scroll down.
- A 3rd year of foreign language allows for most St. Pius students to “test out” of introductory foreign language classes in college, making a minor or double major much more feasible for 4-year college students.
- A 3rd year of foreign language makes St. Pius students competitive with International Baccalaureate students applying to the same colleges.
What about AP language courses?
St. Pius offers Advanced Placement FL in French, Spanish, and Latin.
Because AP Language is technically a 5th year course, students who wish to take AP should carefully read the course progression charts for each language and be proactive about scheduling to be sure they qualify to take AP in their senior year.
All four-year language students should consider taking online courses (Online Computer Applications) when possible to ensure that foreign language can fit into their schedules senior year.
Information for Heritage Learners and Bilingual Students
Students whose native language is not English, those who are bilingual to some degree in a language other than English, and heritage learners must take a placement test in their second language to ensure placement in the appropriate Foreign Language course. Placement will be based on both fluency and literacy.
Students who are both bilingual and biliterate (can read and write in Spanish or French) may be referred to another language to meet the Foreign Language requirement for graduation in the state of Georgia. Placement of biliterate students will be left to the discretion of the department and will be based on the results of the placement test.
Heritage learners, bilingual students, and biliterate students who do not wish to take a class in their second language may take a course in another language without a placement test.
AP Latin Summer Reading
- Virgil’s Aeneid, translated by Stanley Lombardo, Hackett, 2005. Read the entire epic and annotate Books 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, and 12. Annotate the whole book for 5 bonus points on a test.
- Vocabulary and notecards. Via e-mail, I sent a list of vocabulary that you must memorize. You will have a test on these words the first day of school and several more times throughout the year. Though you are not required to make notecards, you my earn 5 bonus points on the vocabulary test if you do so.
- *Review your grammar. The Latin Summer Enrichment Course is available to you if you need it. Register on the SPX webpage.
At St. Pius we are readily available to help students both before and after school. We encourage your children to set an appointment with their teachers should they fall behind in class.
If it is necessary to use an outside tutor, the teachers will make that recommendation to you on a case by case basis.
Here are some resources for extra help:
- Regular Office Hours - On a normal school day, teachers are available from 7:30-8 am and 3:-3:30pm.
- Coaches - If a coach needs to leave early and cannot tutor on a specific day, we encourage students to seek help from other teachers within the department. Any teacher is willing to help! Just ask!
- NHS - The National Honor Society offers student tutors for each foreign language. Mrs. Espinosa is the NHS contact person.
- Study Support - With advanced notice, a teacher can help students (even those that don't have the Study Support class) with Foreign Language during his/her lunch or SS class.
- Haiku - Check your teacher's Haiku page for a list of additional web resources and ways to practice at home.
Middle School Resources
ALL STUDENTS who wish to continue in a foreign language that they have taken in middle school will be given a placement test in that language. Students must show control of the grammar and vocabulary topics listed below in order to be placed in a second-year language class as freshmen.