Meet Your NILA Board: President-Elect and Vice President

Katy CattlettKaty Cattlett, President-Elect
Omaha Public Schools

Katy speaks…Spanish and English.

How do you maintain your proficiency in the language?
I use my Spanish to communicate with students, staff, and parents daily.

What would you recommend to educators to build their pedagogy and practice?
Learn about language acquisition from both the perspective of world languages and English learner programs. Both have similar viewpoints but have valid and proven strategies that could positively improve instruction in the other. Believe in your students and yourself. Cultivate a growth mindset.

Liliana VelascoLiliana Velasco, Vice President
Spanish Teacher
Columbus High School

Liliana speaks…Spanish and English and studied French.

How do you maintain your proficiency in the language?
I use my Spanish in teaching and for general communication in and out of school. Unfortunately, I have lost proficiency in French, which I studied for 8 years.

How do you feel Nebraska is raising the standards for world language education?
I believe Nebraska is working proactively to provide a good language education to students in most districts. However, there are districts in Nebraska where languages are not as important, or where languages options are not provided. Our new standards encourage growth in language and learning. I believe the insight learners have to provide about their learning and proficiency level is a strength within the new standards.