Cactus Shadows class of 2017 receives seal of biliteracy

Several Cactus Shadows High School students earned the seal of biliteracy from the state of Arizona and Cave Creek Unified School District. (submitted photo)

Cactus Shadows High School, a part of the Cave Creek Unified School District, has announced that 34 graduates received the Arizona Seal of Biliteracy for Spanish and six graduates received the Arizona Seal of Biliteracy for French.

Of those students, 23 (Spanish) and three (French) went on to reach CCUSD’s Seal of Biliteracy, which has more rigor than the state’s requirements, according to a press release.

Cristina Ladas, CCUSD’s world language coordinator, has worked with the Arizona Department of Education to recognize students achieving high levels of proficiency in English and a World Language. She noted that the CCUSD Seal of Biliteracy goes above and beyond what the state of Arizona requires.

“CCUSD has been articulating Pre-K-12 grade world language and immersion programs for 15 years,” Ms. Ladas said in the press release. “As a result, students that easily met the state seal requirements needed a higher proficiency target.”

The following graduates received the Arizona Seal of Biliteracy:

  • Spanish: Ashland Campbell; Ariana Heiner; Alex Inchausti; Gregory Isho; Korie Kerr; Peter Magitbay; Shavonne Morin; Cassidy Nguyen; Dominic Rafie; Shannon Smith; and Madison Swaney.
  • French: Michael Marcin; Rebecca Meils; and Audrey Woods.

Cactus Shadows High School students who received both the Arizona and CCUSD Seal of Biliteracy are:

  • Spanish: Helena Benedetto; Dylan Dorough, Gage Duncan; Rachel Dutcher; Griffin Gabler; Jordyn Hill; Riann Johnston; Black Lee; Ella Marencic; Taylor Martos; Kameron Moore; Natalie Nabaty; Kourtney O’Connor; Gabrielle Payne; Bridget Powers; Cody Radigan; Chantal Savoie; Abigail Steward; Nolan Stirling; Josee Teegardin; Levi Ulmer; Daniel Witkop and Jordan Wittman.
  • French: Regan Anderson; Laila Elias; and Olivia Nicholls.

“As the Cave Creek Unified School District and Cactus Shadows High School continue to lead the way for world languages and their benefits for students, our students continue to excel,” said CSHS Principal, Dr. Steve Bebee, in the press release.

“Graduating from high school and being multilingual gives Cactus Shadows graduates a huge advantage over other high school graduates in college and the world beyond. As the bar continues to be raised for the levels of proficiency a high school student can achieve, I continue to be amazed by the outstanding students that we have here at Cactus Shadows.”

CCUSD offers its students world languages, pre-K through 12th grade, with Chinese, French and Spanish Immersion schools. To learn more go to  or call 480-575-2000.

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