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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Education, Elementary & Secondary Schools, Literacy

Mission: The mission of SLLIS is to position all children for success in local and global economies through holistic, intellectually inspiring language immersion programs.

Programs: To operate and maintain an educational institution serving 916 enrolled students in grades k through 6 in the french school, the spanish school and the chinese school. Our ultimate goal is that all students graduate from our secondary campus, the international school, a 12th grade bilingual and biliterate, proficient in a third language, earn a missouri state diploma and an international baccalaureate diploma. At st. Louis language immersion schools, we apply an academic model, language immersion and international baccalaureate for all students, more often seen in independent schools. Furthermore, we serve an intentional mixed income, mixed ethnicity student population, with at least 50% of students eligible for free and reduced lunch and at least 50% african american students. In addition to the clear linguistic and academic benefits of our curricular model, we are providing an education that prepares our children to be confident global leaders, able to mangage a project with team members from different cultures, belief systems and perspectives. We have positioned our school concept to be a national model for urban education reform as the first k-12 in continuum language immersion urban public school network.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

I moved from Chicago to St. Louis in 2007, with a 3 year old and a baby. My son had attended a Spanish immersion preschool, and I thought I'd never find similar options in St. Louis. I was lucky enough to soon meet Rhonda Broussard, Executive Director/Founder of SLLIS, and hear about her dream to open elementary language schools here. Only 2 years later the dream was a reality. My two children now attend the Spanish School. They have not only had the chance to develop fluency in another language, but work alongside students who come from many different linguistic, ethnic, and racial backgrounds: something we as a family treasure. As a professor of education, I have been impressed with the schools' drive for continual improvement, creativity, and dedication to inquiry-based learning. They are moving against a strong tide of accountability, testing, (and more testing), and their moves are impressive.

Client Served

Rating: 4

My husband and I made the decision to choose SLLIS over the AAA, blue ribbon awarded school system up the street from our house. This was a risky decision to make, and every day that my child smiles going to school provides us the reward for making the best decision for our child. Visiting and sitting in at the Chinese School, I was impressed that our English speaking children were communicating in Chinese. They were all very eager to learn and were proud of their ability to speak a second language.

I am thankful for the Title 1 teacher, who continues to test the children for their English learning. This support allows us to focus the needed English learning at home. The support in both their English and Chinese learnings will provide the foundation for an incredible future.

The vision of the founder, Rhonda Broussard, is grand. I am really exicted to see my child flourish and to be a part of this vision.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We chose SLLIS for our son's education for two reasons. First, we wanted him to be fully bilingual - not just able to understand his French father, but entirely fluent and academically literate in his second language. Additionally, we want him to have the wider range of university options - in the US and abroad - that become possible with an international baccalaureat diploma.
We feel lucky that such an exceptional school is available to us tuition-free in an otherwise struggling district. Beyond our family, we are also extrermely proud that this resource exists and is growing global citizens in St. Louis, Missouri.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4


I grew up with a Spanish mother and siblings. Being the youngest I was not taught Spanish nor was it spoken in the house as my sibling got older and my mother was living and working in an American world. I tried to learn Spanish but no matter what I did it just would not take. I went to very expensive schools with "good" teachers and curriculum.
Nothing worked. All through my life I wondered what it would be like to be able to speak my families first language.
As a parent I realized that sending my kids to that same environment and schooling they may miss that same opportunity. I found the Saint Louis Language Immersion School by chance. And ever since it has been both an exciting experience and a scary one. You wonder can they really learn and be thoughtful and educated people when learning a language that is not the primary language spoken at home.

That question has been answered. My children are all the above and they are learning to be world citizens. Meeting people of all backgrounds, races and religions.
This school had changed the projectors for our children to be be ones who look at differences as a positive and challenges as an opportunities.

We need more schools like this and more funding.
When I see my mother and son to speaking in Spanish, I swell up with pride and a bit of regret that I didn't have this opportunity.

MeganBittle

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband and I chose to send our daughters to St. Louis Language Immersion School's Spanish school 3 years ago. Even though we have excellent public schools in our area, we believed that the benefits our children would receive from a bilingual learning experience was well worth the disadvantages of leaving our neighborhood schools. We are thrilled with the progress our girls have made and the community of SLLIS that has become our home.

Just last night, during dinner, my oldest daughter, Clara, said "Kate and I are going to speak only in Spanish and you and dad need to see if you can understand us. It's okay if you need to speak English, Mom." They spent the entire dinner telling us about their day, asking questions, sharing jokes - all in Spanish! Clara is 9 and Kate is 7.

We hope that being truly bilingual will make them more adventurous, global citizens. I can't wait to see what they become and where they go in life. I have SLLIS, Rhonda, and the entire staff to thank for this wonderful gift they have given my family.
- Megan Bittle
SLLIS Spanish School Parent

Client Served

Rating: 5

We are so lucky to have the SLLIS network of charter schools in St. Louis City! SLLIS is an amazing educational opportunity for our children - combining the cognitive benefits of language immersion with the highly sought after International Baccalaureate curriculum will help our kids get the best education possible. And, it's free! We're so thankful and proud to be a SLLIS family!