TROUP COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) – The Troup County School System wrapped up its annual English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) summer academy. The academy consists of three intensive weeks that focus on English reading, writing, listening and speaking. 

Dr. Jacqueline Jones, the Director of Student Service for TCSS said the academy meets each student at their level and assesses how to assist them through remediation. 

“In Troup County we have families who speak 22 different languages from Spanish, we have the most kids that speak Spanish. We have a lot of kids that speak Korean, that is our second most language and then we’re all over the place. You know, Gujarati, Punjabi, we’re all over. Our families come from a lot of different countries. We have an English immersion program,  and we also have different software programs that can meet the needs of our non-English speakers,” said Dr. Jones. 

She said the academy is offered to all the ESOL students during the school year; however, it is open to all students in kindergarten through fifth grade who would like to attend. There is an average of 70 students that attend every year. 

Students follow a schedule that resembles the schedule of a half school day during the academic year. There is transportation, breakfast and lunch provided and students are taught for about three hours each day. 

According to Dr. Jones, the biggest impact the academy has on students is increasing their comfort level of speaking. Students often become more confident throughout the summer and will speak more English at the end of the three weeks. 

Olivia Abarra, is a kindergartener in the TCSS and she is a native Spanish speaker. She enjoys the software learning program available to the students. She said her teacher helps her and she likes playing games while learning the alphabet. 

“Her help me do all my work and my ABC’s work and then her help me with kindergarten and she helps me be a first grader,” said Abarra.