Pathways to the Seal

  • path to proficiency

    What is the Seal of Biliteracy?

    The Vestavia Hills City Schools' Seal of Biliteracy is awarded to students who demonstrate proficiency in English and at least one additional language (including American Sign Language). The seal certifies that a student is proficient in all modes of a language, such as speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Students will be assessed in their junior or senior years for language proficiency. Qualified students will receive a seal on their high school transcript to signify the award along with a certificate of achievement.

    Who can achieve the Seal?

    Any student at VHHS can apply for an work toward attaining the Seal of Biliteracy. The seal can be awarded for any world languages studied at VHHS or any heritage languages learned at home. In order to attain the required proficiency level at VHHS, students should plan to take four consecutive years of the language. Heritage speakers should be prepared to demonstrate proficiency in both spoken and written language.

    How does the Seal benefit students?

    Knowing a second language and understanding other cultures increases students' marketability to both universities and employers. In our global society, cultural competency and language proficiency have become essential skills for the workplace and are required in many fields. In Vestavia Hills alone, more than 40 languages are spoken. The Seal of Biliteracy rewards students who value cultural awareness and can apply their language abilities to real-life settings.