Immersion Programs

In the FCPS immersion programs, which begin in Kindergarten or first grade, students learn math, science, and health through the medium of a world language (French, German, Japanese, Korean or Spanish).

Immersion Programs:

Immersion is a means of acquiring a world language through content matter instruction. Students spend at least half of the day studying the regular grade-level curriculum in classes conducted in the world language. The other half of the day is conducted in English. In Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS), mathematics, science, and health were chosen to be taught in the target language (French, German, Japanese, Korean, or Spanish) because these content areas use manipulatives and concrete, hands-on activities for instruction, which are especially suited to support the natural second language acquisition process. Literacy development in the world language is integrated throughout the various content areas. Students acquire the world language through interesting and meaningful activities as they learn the concepts of the various subjects. Students receive instruction in English for language arts and social studies during the other half of the day. The immersion teachers team with the grade-level English teachers to integrate the total FCPS curriculum. The goals of the FCPS immersion program are to foster grade level academic achievement, develop bilingualism and biliteracy as well as intercultural competence.

FCPS uses two immersion program types depending on the language composition of the students in the class.

World Language (or One-Way) Immersion Program Model:

World Languages Immersion program classes are predominantly composed of students learning the target language. Fairfax County Public School elementary students are able to learn French, German, Japanese, and Spanish at seven elementary schools through the world language immersion program beginning in kindergarten or first grade. Admission is granted via a lottery process.

Two-Way Immersion Program Model:

Two-Way Immersion program classes balance speakers and learners of the target language. Both student populations serve as peer language models during the respective language portion of the day to mutually benefit each group’s language acquisition process. Fairfax County Public School elementary students are able to learn Spanish and Korean at ten elementary schools through the two-way immersion program beginning in kindergarten. Admission is granted via a lottery process.

Benefits of Being Bilingual

Studies have shown many advantages of bilingualism and biliteracy ranging from cognitive to economic and cultural benefits. The Center for Applied Linguistics links the following benefits to language acquisition at an early age.

“Learning a second language:

  • Has a positive effect on intellectual growth and enriches and enhances a child's mental development
  • Leaves students with more flexibility in thinking, greater sensitivity to language, and a better ear for listening
  • Improves a child's understanding of his/her native language
  • Gives a child the ability to communicate with people s/he would otherwise not have the chance to know
  • Opens the door to other cultures and helps a child understand and appreciate people from other countries
  • Gives a student a head start in language requirements for college
  • Increases job opportunities in many careers where knowing another language is a real asset.”
     

Enrollment Information

Seats in the Kindergarten and 1st grade Immersion Program are filled via a lottery process. The lottery process is governed by School Board Regulation 3312 regulating Division-wide and School-Based Lottery Programs. Parents are encouraged to attend one of the informational meetings before enrolling their child. Meetings for kindergarten and first grade will cover information for both two-way immersion and world languages immersion programs.

The schedule of meetings for enrollment in the 2017-2018 school year is now available on the World Language Immersion Programs Registration page.

Immersion Schools

School-based lottery schools are only open to residents who live within the boundaries of these schools. If this is your base school and you are interested in applying, please contact the school directly.

County-wide lottery schools are open to all Fairfax County residents through a lottery process.

Transportation will not be provided for students residing outside the immersion school’s attendance area.

School Language and Grade Levels Type of Immersion Program Middle School Transition Programs
Bailey's Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences
6111 Knollwood Dr.
Falls Church, VA 22041
(703) 575-6800

Spanish

K-2

Two-Way Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Glasgow Middle School
101 Fairfax Pkwy.
Alexandria, VA 22312
(703) 813-8700
Bailey's Upper Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences
6245 Leesburg Pike
Falls Church, VA 22044
(703) 503-2700

Spanish

3-5

Two-Way Immersion

(Continuation from Bailey’s Primary, County-wide placement)

Glasgow Middle School
101 Fairfax Pkwy.
Alexandria, VA 22312
(703) 813-8700
Braddock Elementary
7825 Heritage Dr.
Annandale, VA 22003
703-914-7300

Spanish

K-5

Two-Way Immersion

(School-based lottery placement)

Poe Middle School
7000 Cindy Ln
Annandale, VA 22003
703-813-3800

(Future Transition Program Site)

Fox Mill Elementary
2601 Viking Dr.
Herndon, VA 20171
(703) 262-2700

Japanese

1-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Rachel Carson Middle School
13618 McLearen Rd.
Herndon, VA 20171
(703) 925-3600
Fort Hunt Elementary
8832 Linton Ln.
Alexandria, VA 22308
(703) 619-2600

Spanish

1-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Sandburg Middle School
8428 Fort Hunt Rd.
Alexandria, VA 22308
(703) 799-6100
Great Falls Elementary
701 Walker Rd.
Great Falls, VA 22066
(703) 757-2100

Japanese

1-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Cooper Middle School
977 Balls Hill Rd.
McLean, VA 22101
(703) 442-5800

Groveton Elementary
6900 Harrison Ln.
Alexandria, VA 22306
703-718-8000

Kindergarten and 1st grade only

Spanish

K-5

Two-Way Immersion

(School-based lottery placement)

Sandburg Middle School
8428 Fort Hunt Rd.
Alexandria, VA 22308
(703) 799-6100
Herndon Elementary
630 Dranesville Rd.
Herndon, VA 20170
(703) 326-3100

French: 6 only

Spanish: K-5 only

World Languages Immersion (French)

(County-wide placement)

Two-Way Immersion (Spanish)

(School-based lottery placement)

Herndon Middle School
901 Locust St.
Herndon, VA 20170
(703) 904-4800
Kent Gardens Elementary
1717 Melbourne Dr.
McLean, VA 22101
(703) 394-5600

French

1-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Longfellow Middle School
2000 Westmoreland St.
Falls Church, VA 22043
(703) 533-2600
Lake Anne Elementary
11510 North Shore Dr.
Reston, VA 20190
(703) 326-3500

Spanish

K-6

Two-Way Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Hughes Middle School
11401 Ridge Heights Rd.
Reston, VA 20191
(703) 715-3600
Laurel Ridge Elementary
10110 Commonwealth Blvd.
Fairfax, VA 22032
(703) 426-3700

Spanish

K-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Robinson Secondary School
5035 Sideburn Rd.
Fairfax, VA 22032
(703) 426-2100
London Towne Elementary
6100 Stone Rd.
Centreville, VA 22120
(703) 227-5400

Spanish

K-6

Two-Way Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Stone Middle School
5500 Sully Park Dr.
Centreville, VA 20120
(703) 631-5500
Orange Hunt Elementary
6820 Sydenstricker Rd.
Springfield, VA 22152
(703) 913-6800

German

1-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Irving Middle School
8100 Old Keene Mill Rd.
Springfield, VA 22152
(703) 912-4500
Powell Elementary
13340 Leland Rd.
Centreville, VA 20120
571-522-6000

Korean

K-6

Two-Way Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Liberty Middle School
6801 Union Mill Rd
Clifton, VA 20124
703-988-8100

(Future Transition Program Site)

Ravensworth Elementary
5411 Nutting Dr.
Springfield, VA 22151
(703) 426-3600

Spanish

1-6

World Languages Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Lake Braddock Secondary School
9200 Burke Lake Rd.
Burke, VA 22015
(703) 426-1000

Rose Hill Elementary
6301 Rose Hill Dr.
Alexandria, VA 22310
(703) 313-4200

Spanish

K-6

Two-Way Immersion

(County-wide lottery placement)

Hayfield Secondary School
7360 Telegraph Road
Alexandria, VA 22315
(703) 924-7400

And

Twain Middle School
4700 Franconia Rd.
Alexandria, VA 22310
(703) 313-3700

Washington Mill Elementary
9100 Cherrytree Dr.
Alexandria, VA 22309
703-619-2500

Spanish

K-5

Two-Way Immersion

(School-based lottery placement)

Whitman Middle School
8515 Old Mt Vernon Rd
Alexandria, VA 22309
703-619-3100

(Future Transition Program Site)

 

Research on Dual Language Immersion Education