A group of 13 California Italian language high school teachers recently completed the inaugural Advanced Placement Professional Training Strand that took place from July 17 to July 23 on the UC Santa Barbara campus. Fondazione Italia believes the course will result in new and stronger Italian programs in Southern California high schools from level 1 to level 4/AP®
The Fondazione was offered an opportunity in January by the California World Language project (CWLP) in collaboration with the California Language Teachers’ Association (CLTA), to have a group of the state’s Italian instructors attend this College Board-endorsed program. Thanks to a six-month fundraising effort by Fondazione Italia and the Education Office of the Consulate General of Italy in San Francisco, the language instructors were able to participate not only in an exceptional professional growth opportunity, but to also be part of an important Italian language initiative.
The week was spent between attending general and strand sessions. The general sessions gave all high school language teachers different tools to prepare them for the demands of meeting three essential elements in their curricular offerings – Common Core, World Readiness and Interculturality. The strand portion focused on preparing them to teach an Italian AP® level course as well as lay the foundation for the AP® exam in their level 1 – 4 classes. The Italian strand was led by Bruna Boyle, an adjunct professor in the Italian Department at the University of Rhode Island and College Board-approved reader for the AP® Italian Language and Culture Exam with 31 years of experience teaching Italian to high school students.
“We truly enjoyed having the Italian AP® program as a part of the Seminar this year,” said Duarte Silva, the Executive Director of CWLP. “We look forward to future collaborations for how we can continue to mutually support the teaching and learning of Italian language and culture.”
Lourdes Renteria, the Italian teacher at Hilltop High School in Chula Vista said, "The CWLP/CTLA conference was absolutely wonderful and very helpful. The strategies I learned I applied them immediately in class. I walked away with new ideas, a renewed passion for my career and new friends. Meeting other Italian teachers is so valuable since we are all over the state and country. We rarely get to meet and interact with each other. The conference gave us the opportunity to improve our teaching."
“Opportunities such as these would not be possible without the generous support of the Italian-American community and organizations,” said Hilary Stern, Executive Director of Fondazione Italia. “The teachers and Fondazione Italia would like to thank the generous donors for making this incredible initiative a reality.”
Those that contributed to the fundraising efforts include Marisa Antonini, COM.IT.ES, Orange County American Italian Renaissance Foundation, Di Stefano Cheese Co., Patrons of Italian Culture, Associazione Pugliese, Julie Brown, and Atelier KF Interior Design.
For more information on how you can get involved to help promote Italian language and culture in California please contact Hilary Stern at 310-739-9350 or go to www.italianfoundation.org.
About Fondazione Italia - Fondazione Italia is a California 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1998 for the purpose of promoting the teaching of Italian language and culture in the Southwestern United States. The organization receives grants from the government of Italy in support of its mission, and it works in close collaboration with the Consulate General of Italy in Los Angeles and the Education Office at the Italian Consulate in San Francisco.