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Bilingual & Multicultural Education

Bilingual EducationMilwaukee Public Schools offers diverse learning opportunities that are available for all multilingual and multicultural learners. The cultural and linguistic diversity of the students we serve is one of our greatest assets. We strive to create quality learning environments that respect, reflect, and accommodate diversity.

Mission: We are dedicated to graduating students who have acquired the linguistic and cultural knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to achieve significant career, educational, civic, and personal goals that will enrich our society.

Vision: The Bilingual/Multicultural Education Program holds the promise of helping to improve human relations in our community and contributing to a mutually respectful and creative society by providing:

  • Consistent, high quality programming
  • Research-based instructional strategies
  • Shared accountability for student learning
  • Affirmation and development of student, family, and community asset

Developmental Bilingual Programs

The developmental bilingual program develops full English and Spanish language learning throughout the student's elementary years. This program builds upon the student's primary language skills and develops and expands the English language skills of each student to enable him or her to achieve proficiency in both languages, while providing access to the content areas. Bilingual Programs preserve and enhance students’ skills in their first language while they acquire increasing levels of English. The result is proficiency in both languages.

Dual Immersion Programs

In dual immersion programs, native English and native Spanish speaking students learn both languages together, with reading and language arts classes taught in students' native and second languages. Milwaukee students are able to continue on the Immersion pathway from pre-K to eighth grade and will graduate bilingual and biliterate, college and career ready.

English as a Second Language (ESL)

A program of techniques, methodology and special curriculum designed to teach English language learners (ELL) students English language skills, which may include listening, speaking, reading, writing, study skills, content vocabulary, and cultural orientation. ESL instruction is usually in English with little use of native language.

First Nations

The purpose of the First Nations Studies program is to meet the unique educational and culturally related academic needs of our First Nations students in MPS so that these students can achieve to the same challenging state standards as all students.

International Newcomer Center/Newcomer Summer Center

The MPS Newcomer programs are specifically designed for recent immigrant students with limited English language proficiency. They provide intensive instruction in a special academic environment.

Full/Partial Immersion Programs

Immersion school programs in which teachers teach core content in the foreign language all or part of the day. Students become functionally proficient, master subject content taught in the new language, and acquire and understanding of and appreciation for other cultures.

World Languages

MPS World Language programs prepare all students to be multilingual, culturally competent, respectful and responsible citizens of an interconnected, more peaceful world.


  • Lau Compliance Office - Staff members at the Lau Compliance Office enroll children who speak any home language other than English and screens students for ESL services.
  • Bilingual Parent Services

Quick View

We provide and support:

  • Approximately 7,100 English Language Learners speaking 50 distinct languages
  • 13,500 students in World Language Programs grades K4-12 learning seven different languages
  • 41 schools offering Bilingual and/or ESL programs across the district
  • Adult ESL classes in five Bilingual Parent Centers across the district
  • Citywide Multilingual Advisory Council which serves in an advisory capacity to the Milwaukee Public Schools on language acquisition and culturally relevant programs


Phone: 414-475-8091
Fax: 414-475-8188

Manager, Bilingual Multicultural Education:

Lorena Gueney

© Milwaukee Public Schools 2017
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