ROCKFORD, Ill. – The State Seal of Biliteracy, a recognition given to graduating high school students who have demonstrated a high level of proficiency in English and another language, would be available to private school students under a bill supported by state Rep. Maurice West II, D-Rockford.

“Understanding how to read, write, listen and speak in more than one language is incredibly helpful for a student’s skillset,” West said. “Whether a student is in a public school or private, they should be recognized for developing proficiency with multiple languages.”

The purpose of the State Seal of Biliteracy is to encourage students to study languages, certify attainment of biliteracy, provide employers and schools a method of identifying individuals with biliteracy skills and to recognize the value of diversity and languages of different communities. Currently, school district participation in the certification process is voluntary, and it is restricted to public schools only. The West-backed House Bill 37 would allow nonpublic schools to participate as well. Students awarded the seal may have it designated on their diploma and transcript.

“It takes a great deal of hard work and dedication to learn another language,” West said. “I commend the students in Rockford who are studying right now to expand their knowledge of languages. It will open up opportunities in higher education and within career fields they may wish to pursue.”

For more information, please contact West’s constituent service office at 815-987-7433 or

Rep Maurice WestRep Maurice West

67th District

Springfield Office:
237-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-3167

District Office:
200 S. Wyman
Suite 304
Rockford, IL 61101
(815) 987-7433