Our Mission, Purpose, and Values

Our Mission

St. Louis Language Immersion School provides a bilingual, culturally responsive, transformational education that enriches the children of St. Louis city.

Our Purpose

To dismantle systems of oppression by creating a just, equitable and inclusive school, St. Louis community, and world.

Our Values

  • Provide an accessible and rigorous bilingual education

  • Listen to and engage all voices

  • Commit to equity, anti-racism and cultural competency

  • Reflect on and respond to data throughout our school

  • Celebrate mission moments, both big and small

SLLIS Definitions

Antiracism: The policy or practice of opposing racism and promoting racial tolerance. (Oxford

Dictionary-Microsoft Bing)

Bilingual Education: The instruction of lessons in two languages (also known as Dual Language).

Celebrate: To commemorate actions, activities, and people with festivities or acknowledgements for growth, awareness, achievements, holidays and community regarding SLLIS academics, culture, mission, purpose and values.

Cultural Competency: The ability to effectively and comfortably interact with people of different

cultures, involving four stages of practice: awareness, change, knowledge and skills. The stages of practice are defined as:

Awareness: The examination of own beliefs, prejudices and discriminatory behavior.

Change: The action of changing your beliefs and attitudes about people who are different from you in terms of race, ethnicity, culture, sexuality, gender, disability or other characteristics from discriminatory to acceptance.

Knowledge: Learning about the beliefs, practices and values of other cultures.

Skills: The development of communication skills and sensitivity to effectively interact with diverse individuals.

(Developed in part from definitions from National Alliance on Mental Illness, University of Chicago)

Culturally Responsive Teaching: Teaching pedagogy that recognizes the importance of including student’s cultural references in all aspects of learning. (Ladson-Billings, 1994)

Data Driven Decisions: Decisions that are anchored in the collection of internal and external quantitative and qualitative data.

Equitable: Fair and impartial. (Webster Dictionary)

Equity: A measure of fair treatment, opportunities and outcome across race, gender, class and other dynamics. (Georgetown University Anti Racism Toolkit definitions)

Inclusive: Broad in orientation or scope. (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

Inclusive Classroom: A classroom that is welcoming and supportive of diverse, academic, social, emotional and communication needs of all students. (Inclusive Classrooms: A Primer for Teachers, www.ReadingRockets.org).

Just: Guided by truth, reason and fairness. Used especially of what is legally or ethically right or proper or fitting; Free from favoritism or self-interest or bias or deception (Developed in part from www.thefreedictionary.com)

Rigorous Education: Intellectually motivating and challenging curriculum that guides students to confront ideas and problems in new and meaningful ways.

System of oppression: The systemic power imbalances that influence interactions between people of different cultures, creating a system where certain groups of people have more advantages and those with less advantage have a reduced sense of belonging and power in the society at large.(Developed in part from definitions from National Alliance on Mental Illness, University of Chicago)

Transformational Education: The engagement in critical study, review and self-reflection that promotes new meaning, perspectives, concepts, beliefs and judgements.