Reminder: Rios application window closes Feb. 23

Reminder: Rios application window closes Feb. 23
Students pose for a class photo

Hello families, 

We want to remind you that the initial application window for the Ríos Spanish Dual Language Immersion program will close on Friday, Feb. 23. 

The goal of the program is to provide educational experiences, beginning in kindergarten and sustained through Grade 12, that support academic achievement, bilingualism and biliteracy in Spanish and English. It is the only dual language immersion program in Winona County.

In kindergarten, students will begin to use words and phrases in Spanish as they build a base for understanding a new language. In Grades 1-2, students will be able to speak, read and write in Spanish. 

Ríos is for everyone! WAPS encourages families of all backgrounds to consider the Ríos program. According to researchers of dual language immersion programs, Black students scored as much as two grades above grade level by the middle school years. In addition, students with learning disabilities, autism and other categories of special needs scored significantly higher than their peers not in a dual language immersion program.

Native English speakers, new immigrants, English Learners, Latinos, Asians, Indigenous groups and students of low socioeconomic status all thrive in dual language immersion programs.

If you are interested in the program for the future Winhawk in your family, please fill out the short application form linked here.

There is one more informational session that will be held at 10 a.m. tomorrow (Thursday, Feb. 15) at Jefferson Elementary. This is an opportunity to learn a little more about the program and do a quick tour of the school, including a couple of brief visits to a Ríos classroom. To RSVP for tomorrow’s info session, fill out this form.

Once the application window is closed, WAPS administration will review the number of applications and determine whether or not to proceed with a second section of kindergarten as has been the case the last two years. Families will be updated as soon as this decision is made. 

More information about Ríos is available at

Thank you,
Winona Area Public Schools