Supporting Dual Language Learners in Early Learning Settings

June 2, 2016

The U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Education (ED) announced a new policy statement on "better supporting our country's youngest dual language learners (DLLs) in early childhood programs."

Collectively, the White House, HHS, and ED took the following actions:

  • A New Federal Policy Statement on More Effectively Supporting Dual Language Learners in Early Childhood Programs: HHS and ED released a Federal policy statement on supporting DLLs in early childhood settings. The statement includes comprehensive policy recommendations to States and to early childhood programs. It also recommends that States and local communities work together to ensure that all early childhood programs are welcoming and linguistically accessible to families of DLLs, foster children’s emerging bilingualism and learning more broadly, and support the early childhood workforce in building their capacity to stimulate the learning of DLLs. 
  • A New DLL Electronic Toolkit for Programs, Early Educators, Child Care Providers, and Families: The new DLL Toolkit, released by HHS’ Office of Head Start, includes free resources on supporting the learning and development- including dual language development - of DLLs at home, in early learning settings, and in the community. The DLL toolkit will be available at no cost to all early childhood programs, including all Head Start programs, which serve more than 300,000 DLLs every day. The toolkit will also be disseminated to home visitors in all 50 States supported by the Maternal Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting program, and the families they serve.

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