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Language Educators to Convene in Orlando

CONTACT: Steve Ackley
703-894-2900, x105

October 20, 2008, Alexandria, VA – More than 5500 language teachers and administrators will come together to celebrate the growing interest in language programs in the U.S. at the 42nd Annual Convention and World Languages Expo convened by The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) on November 21-23 Orlando, FL.   The association will stage this conference and exhibition at the city’s Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort, focusing on a theme of “Opening Minds to the World Through Languages.” 

Addressing the convention’s Friday, November 21 Opening General Session will be author, historian and economist Neil Howe sharing his perspective on Teaching Languages to Different Generations in the Globalizing World.  A highlight of the session will be the announcement of the 2009 ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year Award.  Sponsored by publisher Holt McDougal, the award annually recognizes a foreign language teacher who exhibits excellence in classroom language teaching.  This individual will also serve as a spokesperson for the language profession for the following year.
These teachers are evaluated by each state language association and then by committees at the regional level.  An ACTFL Awards Committee consisting of past presidents of the association as well as other representatives of the profession determine the national winner, who will receive a $2,000 stipend.

The finalists representing the five geographic regions of the U.S. are:  Sandra Garcia of Forest Grove High School in Forest Grove, OR; Emily Wagner of Germantown Academy in Fort Washington, PA; Samantha Godden-Chmielowicz of Schurz High School, Chicago, IL; Toni Theisen of Loveland High School in Loveland, CO; and Carmen Scoggins of Watauga High School, Boone, NC.

More than 11,000 foreign language educators and administrators hold membership in ACTFL.  The association provides these members with a wide variety of professional development opportunities, including training and certification programs.  The annual convention offers more than 700 program sessions and workshops where members and experts in the field share their research, classroom experience and best practices.  The World Languages Expo offers a once-a-year opportunity to view the latest developments in language teaching technology and classroom products.

Press representatives are invited to contact Steve Ackley at 703-894-2900 to arrange for credentials to cover the convention. 

Monday, October 20, 2008