GHS students receive MA State Seal of Biliteracy designation


Last month, many Gloucester High School Students participated in the Massachusetts Seal of Biliteracy exam, and passed with impressive scores. 

All students who participated in the exam scored between the intermediate and advanced categories.  

These students will receive the Massachusetts State Seal of Biliteracy, an official designation, on their high school diplomas when they graduate, along with an additional sash to wear with their graduation robes.

“Taking this biliteracy test is really important to me because we speak English at home in a predominantly Brazilian family,” said senior Andrew Coelho. “I didn’t feel 100 percent confident saying that I’m bilingual. These test results mean a lot to me and I plan on using the Portuguese knowledge I have now and further developing it to become 100 percent fluent.”

The Seal of  Biliteracy exam was newly introduced to GHS this year and was offered to students who excelled in both the English Language Arts (ELA) and a World Language. The scoring criteria for the exam is based on a 9-point scale, with 1-3 points being novice, 4-6 points being intermediate, and 7-10 points being advanced. 

“This is our first year giving this biliteracy test,” said World Language department Program Leader Celestino Basile, “We are very proud of the students who  took the test and did very well with it.” 

Junior Ben Carpenter was encouraged by his teacher to take the exam. 

“It was good to be able to show all that I learned over the course of the year,” said Carpenter. “ I hope that younger students will be encouraged to take more language classes because of this.” 

The following students earned the MA State Seal of Biliteracy this year: 

Arabic: Andrew Fahim 

Brazilian Portuguese: Maite Passos,  Vinicius Passos, Marcio DePaulo, Andrew Coelho, Victoria DaCoste, Dakota De Oliveira, Kayky Barbosa

Spanish: Allan Segura Jimenez, Yahir Collado, Yuniel Sanchez Batis, Angelina Aponte, Ben Carpenter, Linda Toromo, Jhailenny Tejada

Italian: Dakota De Oliveira