Weiler, Spencer

Committee Member

Vogel, Linda

Committee Member

Berg, Margaret

Committee Member

Romero, Deborah


College of Education and Behavioral Sciences; Leadership and development: Higher Education and P-12 Education Educational Leadership and Policy Studies


University of Northern Colorado

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Place of Publication

Greeley (Colo.)


University of Northern Colorado

Date Created



225 pages

Digital Origin

Born digital


Dual language (DL) programs have been proven to increase student achievement (Thomas & Collier, 2002; Thomas, Collier, & Collier, 2010) but a gap remains in how to support teachers in their instruction of Spanish to both English home language and Spanish home language students. This mixed methods, explanatory, sequential design study was conducted in two Rocky Mountain resort communities in two school districts. Participants were chosen based on the research criterion of being DL elementary teachers in rural amenity-based destinations. The Guiding Principles for Dual-language Education (Howard et al., 2018) was used as the conceptual framework. Data were obtained from three sources: an online survey using demographic data, the Guiding Principles for Dual-language Education, face-to-face interviews, and field notes. The online survey was sent to 116 elementary DL teachers in eight schools; 44 participants responded. In the follow-up face-to-face interviews, eight participants were interviewed. Data from the online survey were triangulated with transcripts from the interviews and field notes. The main results from this study revealed elementary dual language teachers in rural amenity destinations identified several important supports related to the implementation and maintenance of a successful DL: support through human interaction such as principals and coordinators, collaboration time, a collaborative culture, PTA/conferences, family, and community. Teachers recognized they would feel more supported if needed or desired supports were not lacking. A lack of Spanish resources and retaining qualified Spanish teachers were identified as having an impact on both English and Spanish DL elementary teachers. The implications of sharing the identified supports of this study could illuminate educators regarding the implementation or maintenance of DL programs.

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